Did you know it can take up to 20 minutes for your brain to register when your stomach is full? You can do quite a bit of eating past full in 20 minutes.
The Confucius teaching is called Hara Hachi Bu. What is it? The rough English translation is, ‘eat until you are 8 parts of 10 full.’
The residents of Okinawa Japan practice Hara Hachi Bu daily. They also have the longest life expectancy in the world, the most centenarians per 100k people, and BMI’s 8 points lower than their US counterparts.
How do you train yourself to eat until only 80%?
- Eat slowly - budget enough time to eat so you can rest at the end of a meal
- Eat half of what you have, then ask, “am I still hungry?” You may still want the food, but if you’re not categorically hungry, do step 3:
- Wait 20 minutes to see if you still want to eat. Eat until you’re no longer hungry, not until you’re full.
Dietitians say it can take 15-20 meals to reset the muscle memory of the stomach so that it gets full with less food. Trust that it’s working, and… Hara Hachi Bu!
If Confucius were alive today, we think he might say, "Eat until 79% full, then have an ERND truffle or bite!"