Is it Time to Diet?
Now that the holidays are over performers often think about going on yet another diet. Please don’t! First, research shows most people imagine they’ve gained four times more weight than is actually the case between Thanksgiving and the New Year, so try not to panic.Second, dieting is a great way to gain weight by slowing your metabolism and making you want to overeat. A few simple changes, in contrast, seem to work best according to food researcher Dr. Brian Wansink.
His studies show that if you fool your eyes, you can literally fool your stomach. For example, a normal portion of food on a twelve-inch plate looks puny compared to the same amount of food on one that’s only eight inches wide. The same principle applies to short squat glasses in contrast to the long slender variety. You guessed it! You’ll tend to drink more from the shorter ones. The same holds true for red versus white wine glasses and large containers.
Other traps include mindlessly snacking in front of the television or computer, talking and eating at the same time when you dine out with friends, putting yummy leftovers where you can see them in the fridge rather than covering them with tin foil, and shopping when you are hungry.
For more tips on weight management, check out my book The Dancer’s Way, where I also discuss which types of exercise work best with your body type. Hint: Muscular performers who want to slim down should avoid intense, high-impact aerobics.