My goal is to start eating healthier food than I do now, and more specifically, to increase the number of vegetables consumed. This is necessary to guide us towards a healthy lifestyle. Adherence to this principle implies, in addition to higher consumption of vegetables, sufficient physical activity, absence of harmful habits, and rejection of destructive behavior. It has been scientifically proven that a positive lifestyle reduces the risk of circulatory system diseases by about 50% (Khera et al. 2349). As part of this work, a plan to increase the proportion of vegetables consumed should be outlined.
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At present, vegetables are not the basis of my diet, and their consumption is up to 30-50 grams per day, which is about eight times less than the norm. My goal is to increase daily use to 150 grams. At first, this seems quite tricky due to diverse reasons. The most important thing is that I do not like their taste at all. Most often, vegetables after cooking are insipid and have no unique flavor or taste. Of course, you can eat raw vegetables, and then their taste will be more distinctive, but I’m worried about the safety of fresh food. All the plant foods I eat now only include potatoes. From the above, we can identify the barrier that prevents me from living a healthy life – it is the taste value of vegetables. Then it becomes apparent that you need to change the way they are cooked, perhaps adding extra spices.
As for the idea of operant conditioning, to fix a good result (an operant), we should create an environment in which this result will seem positive. The rat presses the pedal and receives food, and the person returns to the restaurant where he likes it. Therefore, it is necessary to build strong links between the desired goal of behavior, a favorable result, and an adverse impact (Kabir 3). This can work according to the scheme described above. Every time during lunch, I have to add boiled or fresh vegetables, such as lettuce and broccoli leaves, to the plate.
In addition, there are several ways to increase the number of vegetables in the diet, based on the barrier to eliminating tastelessness. First, sour cream sauce or low-fat sour cream sauce can be used to improve the taste. Then the tasteless vegetables will have a taste. Secondly, you can eat vegetables in liquid form. You can cook vegetable juices, such as carrot juice, or mix fruit with vegetables.
Of course, for this useful habit of taking hold, it is necessary to monitor the progress of its assimilation closely. I may forget about adding vegetables to dinner or become lazy to cook juices. In that case, I need someone who reminds me of my goal. However, positive amplification can be done more conveniently with the help of an application on the smartphone, which, at a specific time, reminds me of the vegetables. Given that we have the phone with us most of the day, this is a great way to increase your positive eating habits.
Positive reinforcement can be used here for more effective anchoring. This can be the usual praise programmed in the smartphone app. In addition to the apparent improvement in health status, the financial component can also be a decisive factor that a person can gain from positive reinforcement. If the goal is fully achieved, the author can spend the accumulated money on entertainment, such as walking or going to the movies.
In case of failure to comply with the rules of achievement of the goals, a positive punishment may be applied. In this capacity, physical activity can be used as a punishment. For example, if I have not consumed the daily rate of vegetables, I need to run one km. Thus, not only the mistake will be smoothed, but also the punishment will be good for my health.
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The use of the principles of operant conditioning in fixation therapy has certain advantages. A person establishes new habits (or gets rid of old ones) in search of positive reinforcement. Negative reinforcement can be implemented by a friend or through a smartphone application. Punishment, which is attributed to misconduct in the progress of the goal, will be beneficial because it is associated with physical activity.
Kabir, Ashraful. “Bad Habits in Our Daily Life and its Solution.” CPQ Medicine Short Communication, vol. 1, no. 6, 2018. pp. 1-3.
Khera, Amit V., et al. “Genetic Risk, Adherence to a Healthy Lifestyle, a Coronary Disease.” New England Journal of Medicine, vol. 375, no. 24, 2016, pp. 2349-2358.