You've probably heard the infamous phrase "your eyes are bigger than your stomach" and for those who struggle with large portions, this often rings true. There are diverse reasons for indulging in large portions, such as emotional eating, an attempt to relieve pain in the upper GI, or even to fill a mineral or vitamin deficiency. Even an overactive thyroid gland can lead to a voracious appetite and therefore hefty amounts of food.
Large portions can be unhealthy for many reasons. An overstuffed stomach has a hard time churning your food, making it difficult to digest your meal. Large portions make you tired. It's easier for parasites to survive breakdown from enzymes when hidden in a larger meal. Large portions can lead to overspending on food. Accordingly, addressing the underlying patterns and programming that lead to large portions is important in Ayurveda.
Excessively large portions can cause stomach distension. When the quantity of food overwhelms your stomach's capacity, the food builds up pressure, ultimately forcing it's way into the duodenum, the start of your small intestine. Pre-mixed with digestive acids in the stomach, this food burns your duodenum, causing ulcers and inflammation in the upper gastric area.
How much should I eat?
The ideal portion in Ayurveda is the amount of food that fits into both hands cupped together. After eating, your stomach should contain 1/3 food, 1/3 liquid, and 1/3 air. In other words, your stomach should be 2/3's full. IF you eat quickly, you won't feel satisfied at 2/3's full. But if you wait 20 minutes, long enough for your body to start digesting the food, you'll discover you don't need to stuff yourself.
Reconnect to True Hunger
You might have grown up in a family where you were expected to eat everything on your plate, regardless of your hunger, fullness, and satiety cues. Then as an adult, you find yourself struggling to hear to your body's internal appetite cues. If you eat too quickly or while distracted, you may unconsciously heaping up large portions before your body has a chance to alert you, "Enough!".
To reconnect with your hunger cues, start by paying attention, no matter how faint these cues may seem, simply try to feel them. Try eating until your half full. Then check in with your stomach to see how it feels. Does belly hunger persist? If it doesn't, try waiting ten minutes and see how you feel.
One of the biggest appetite regulators of your body is the feeling of a full stomach.
Each time you eat too much and overstretch your stomach, your stomach gets bigger and harder to fill. Your body gets used to having an abnormally high amount of food in its stomach and satiety is blurred. Your capacity to eat more increases as well, which can perpetuate the behavior. Ayurveda can help you return your stomach to a smaller size so that you can eat when you are hungry and know when you are truly full, as opposed to uncomfortably stuffed.
If you find yourself tempted to continue eating despite fullness, distract yourself: go for a walk, talk to a loved one, work on a craft. Find an activity engaging enough to get your mind off the remaining food and back on life's other pleasures.
What to do when you've eaten too much
If you do indulge in large portions on occasion, Ayurveda offers some helpful tips to avoid causing imbalance. Roasting a teaspoon of coriander seeds and a teaspoon of fennel seeds in a pot without oil and then chewing them can be effective at curbing indigestion. Another option is drinking a glass of water with the juice from half a lemon or lime and a pinch of baking soda. These practices are not a quick fix and should not be used to justify recurrent large portions, but they can help mitigate some of the imbalances caused by overeating if you slip up.
Augment your diet with these specially chosen ingredients below which may be useful for 'Large portions'.
Individual results vary depending the cause of your imbalance and by constitution.
Please research the ingredients below to find which are most helpful for you, and check with your doctor before making any changes to your health and wellness routine.
DISCLAIMER: The pathogenesis of each person's condition is unique, and so the diet must be fit to the individual and the unique root causes of the condition in your body.
The information on this page is for educational purposes only and should not be used to treat a medical condition. It is not a substitute for medical care.
Please check with your doctor before making any changes to your health and wellness routine.
WHAT IMBALANCES CAN IT CAUSE?
AGGRAVATES THESE DOSHAS & BIOCHARACTERISTICS
'Large portions' is likely to aggravate the following doshas and biocharacteristics. If you have a systemic imbalance of one of these doshas or biocharacteristics,
Ayurveda would generally recommend removing, substitute or lessen the frequency of 'Large portions'.
Improper food and lifestyle causes balances to accumulate.
Ayurveda shows you exactly which doshas and biocharacteristics are likely to accumulate in your body.
Once these doshas and biocharacteristics accumulate too much, they will begin to cause imbalance.
You can reduce an imbalanced dosha or biocharacteristic by removing things that aggravate it
from your diet and lifestyle.
A class of laxative that adds bulk and water to stools. The size of a stool stimulates peristalsis and the stool passes more easily through the colon. It is important to drink plenty of water when using high fiber laxatives, as they can be dehydrating.
LARGE PORTIONS IS IN STAGE OF DISEASE 0 - POTENTIAL CAUSE
Potential causes increase and disturb your imbalanced doshas and biocharacteristics,
causing them to accumulate and spiral out of control.
For example, if you're overheated and eat a chili pepper, heat may become excessive and cause disease.
As a dosha or biocharacteristic accumulates in your body according to your dietary and lifestyle habits,
it is more and more likely to cause disease.
You can reduce an imbalanced dosha or biocharacteristic in two ways, by removing, or lessening the frequency of aggravating causes from your diet and lifestyle,
as well as by favoring balancing diet and lifestyle practices.
For example, try eating something as cool as a cucumber when you're overheated, instead of a chili pepper.
REDUCE THESE RELATED SYMPTOMS & HABITS
The following symptoms & habits may be related to 'Large portions'.
See your quiz results for a computerized assessment of your body type.
Please click on the symptoms below to learn more about them.
Biocharacteristics of the 14,369 People Reporting Large portions
On average the biocharacteristics
of people reporting Large portions were less aggravated than 75% of other symptoms.
From the 14,369 people who reported Large portions in this research study of 74,671 individuals,
average deviation in biocharacteristic levels were the following:
Ayurveda strengthens the body, in addition to addressing the disorder. It take a holistic,
systemic approach, instead of focusing only on the disorder in question. Ayurveda
shows a person how to interpret signs and symptoms of imbalance, and how to address them
using materials from home, so they can optimize their health on a continual basis. You can't
take the doctor home with you, but you can take Ayurveda home with you.
Ayurveda is the most advanced and easy to use home system for self healing with an
exceptional focus on digestion.
HOW DOES AYURVEDA WORK?
Ayurveda starts by identifying your body type,
which identifies certain tendencies in your body to get sick (as well as identifying your strengths).
It uses body type to determine the likely root causes of your disorders.
Next, Ayurveda analyzes the nature of your disorder.
It fits all your signs and symptoms into a pattern, expressed as a combination of biocharaceristics (gunas).
For example, you may have a heat disorder, a cold disorder, or an oily disorder, etc.
This simple categorical approach shows you how to correct systemic imbalances and strengthen your body as a whole.
On Joyful Belly, we've created an extensive categorization of food so you can easily match food to your imbalanced biocharacteristics.
By eating an optimal diet that balances your biocharacteristics, your whole body is strengthened
and the conditions that created the disorder are removed. Once the root causes of the disease
are removed, the disease lessens in strength or disappears altogether. Additional remedies -
such as herbs and lifestyle practices - focused on the specific disorder, can greatly enhance
To get started on your Ayurvedic journey, we first recommend that your find your body
type by taking our free quiz. In Ayurveda, every solution is based on your unique body type, so
by taking this quiz, you’ll get the best results.
John Immel, the founder of Joyful Belly, teaches people how to have a
healthy diet and lifestyle with Ayurveda.
His approach to Ayurveda exudes a certain ease, which many find enjoyable and insightful.
John also directs Joyful Belly's School of Ayurveda
, which specializes in digestive tract pathology & Ayurvedic nutrition.
John and his wife Natalie recently published Explore Your Hunger: A Guide to Hunger, Appetite & Food.
John's interest in Ayurveda and digestive tract pathology was inspired by a complex digestive disorder acquired from years of international travel, including his public service work in South Asia.
John's commitment to the detailed study of digestive disorders reflects his zeal to get down to the roots of the problem. His hope and belief in the capacity of each & every client to improve their quality of life is nothing short of a personal passion.
John's creativity in the kitchen and delight in cooking for others comes from his family oriented upbringing.
In addition to his certification in Ayurveda, John holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University.
John enjoys sharing Ayurveda within the context of his Catholic roots,
and finds Ayurveda gives him an opportunity to participate in the healing mission of the Church.
Jesus expressed God's love by feeding and healing the sick.
That kindness is the fundamental ministry of Ayurveda as well.