Do you ever notice that the more you eat of a food, the less you enjoy it? Think about when you eat pizza. Have you ever noticed how the first slice is more tasty than the fourth slice? That’s because you get the greatest enjoyment and satisfaction from those first bites of a food. After that, your taste buds are used to the flavor and you’re just eating the food to finish it or to feel full.
This is the law of diminishing returns. Okay, it doesn’t have the same meaning as it does in economics, but it’s a useful concept to keep in mind when you’re on a diet. It means that food gets less and less enjoyable with each bite. The law of diminishing returns encourages you to slow down and eat with your senses. So instead of having an entire brownie, focus on fully enjoying two or three bites. Slow down and notice the brownie’s sweet aroma, chewy texture and rich chocolate flavor.
Try this next time you’re having a dessert. Notice how the first bite is more enjoyable than the second bite, and how that the second bite is tastier than the third. After the third bite, you’re done. If you’re tempted by what’s left, stop and remind yourself that every bite after that won’t be as satisfying. Once you’ve mastered this trick a few times, it can help you stop obsessing over those non-diet treats. Instead of making them off-limits, you can allow yourself just three bites. That will give you the taste that you’re craving without sending you over your calorie limit for the day.