Food Habits: How Do You Decide When To Eat?

We realize this is kind of a strange question. You eat...when you eat...right? But January is the month when every piece of food media is blaring about healthy eating and restraint, so we've been giving our own eating choices a little extra thought. Do you eat when you're hungry? Do you eat on a specific schedule? Do you eat whether you're hungry or not? How do you decide when to eat?

Over the holidays, away from the set schedule of the regular work week, my husband and I found that our eating habits completely relaxed. We were getting up later and going to bed later, so our meal times shifted accordingly.

But without the context clues of alarm clocks and group lunch breaks, we also found that we would just eat when we were hungry. One day that meant lunch at 1pm, and another day that meant lunch at 3pm. Some days we would have a huge breakfast, a light lunch, and a bigger dinner. Other days, lunch was the major meal. All in all, I felt like I was eating according to what my body wanted whenever it happened to want it. I felt satisfied and happy.

This really got me thinking about eating habits. Back from vacation, we don't always have the luxury of eating whenever we want. Things like afternoon meetings and commute times get in the way of that. Breakfast is also always a conundrum — most health professionals say we should eat it, but what if we're just not hungry?

So, dear readers, I open it up to you. What are your eating habits? How do you decide when to eat?

Related: Conscientious Eater: Leaving Food on the Plate

(Image: Flickr member Steve Keys licensed under Creative Commons)

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