How To Not Eat All The Things When WFH
1. Do a fridge and pantry makeover to remove the most tempting things that leave you feeling guilty or unsatisfied.
You can do this gradually or go all Marie Kondo in one fell swoop, but removing the items that aren't leaving you feeling joy or satisfied AFTER eating are best eliminated from the kitchen. If you're upset with yourself after mindlessly consuming a bag of chips or if those packaged cookies just added fuel to the fire-that-is-your-sweet-tooth are those items really worth keeping in your home?
For a fridge and pantry makeover work on following this simple 3 step guide for evaluating food labels and work on finding more satisfying or healthy swaps for snacks and meals. Not sure where to begin? Working with a health coach is the perfect way to start making small changes that are sustainable!
2. Make your fridge visually appealing with healthy snacks right up front that are low calorie and okay for mindless snacking.
Frozen blueberries (sprinkled with cinnamon) or frozen grapes are a sweet and refreshing snack and it's hard to eat them too quickly. Homemade popcorn can be made in the same amount of time as a microwavable bag with these microwavable bowls. That way you can add your own amazing seasoning (stay tuned for an upcoming post with a list of awesome combos!). For a salty, savory, and crunchy snack that you can eat to your heart's content try sliced cucumbers with Everything But The Bagel Seasoning. Seriously...go try it.
Choose a refreshing drink like water with fruit or herbs added to infuse flavor, sparkling water, or tea. Often thirst contributes to cravings or hunger and this will keep you occupied with something to consume without adding up on calories.
Great add-ins for water or sparking water include cucumber and mint, frozen blueberries with lime and mint, frozen raspberries and rosemary, organic strawberries and lemon - the options are endless! If you really want to spice things up try creating a mocktail that feels like a treat. I'm currently loving Seedlip's distilled non-alcoholic spirits at any hour for a drink that feels like it's from a swanky cocktail bar.
4. Portion out your snacks for the day.
To set yourself up for success, it’s nice to have a clear end point and portion sizes. Focus on eating satisfying balanced meals and lay out an appropriate amount of snacks in a separate area so you don’t consume an unknown number of servings by reaching for one more handful of chips.
In one study, participants ate 45% more popcorn when it was served in a large container. Interestingly, even when the popcorn was stale AND the participants even reported that they disliked the popcorn they still consumed 33.6% more of it. That’s a lot of extra calories for something you’re not even enjoying. If portioning out all your food isn’t going to happen (I get it...who has time for that), consider putting a measuring cup or measuring spoon with the appropriate serving size in the bag. Measure out a serving before you start to snack. Once you’ve consumed all those snacks focus on hydrating. If you really have to chew on something turn to low calorie snack options like veggies or popcorn.
5. Create a physical barrier.
Sometimes your mind needs a little reminder. And by "little" reminder I mean physical obstacle. If possible, work in a space where you’re not able to see the kitchen so it’s not calling to you every time you feel like you want a break. If that’s not possible, create a barrier using a string or by putting chairs in the way. By creating an obstacle that you have to move it may make you second guess whether you really need another piece of cake.
6. Give yourself reminders about your goals.
Sometimes you need to send your future moment-of-weakness self a gentle message. Taping a sign to the fridge door with reminders like "Go hydrate", "Are you really hungry?", or "GET OUT OF THE F***ing KITCHEN" can work. If you make a creative sign, please share it with me on Instagram!
7. If you absolutely MUST eat something else, eat it with your non-dominant hand.
Sounds crazy, but studies have shown that by using your other hand it makes you more conscious of the action. Study participants consumed fewer calories when they ate with that hand, likely because they were eating in a more mindful way that allowed them to recognize when they had enough.
8. Choose whole, non-processed foods.
Processed foods literally have an entire team of people working to create the perfect texture, flavor profile, and packaging to make you not want to stop eating. They also often are void of nutritional value so that your body is confused – it’s eating but still not getting the macro and micronutrients it needs so it’s not satisfied.
Need some ideas? Fruit and vegetables are always good options. To make them more interesting sprinkle cinnamon on sliced apples or have pickled or leftover roasted vegetables available in the fridge. You can prep veggie-packed dips to snack on during the week like my beet hummus or plant based queso dip. For protein, hard boiled eggs stuffed with hummus or salsa, slices of turkey rolled up with avocado and peppers, lettuce wraps with your favorite sandwich ingredients, or smoked salmon wrapped around asparagus or on cucumber slices are satisfying options.
9. Get dressed in real clothes not your super stretchy pajama pants.
When was the last time you wore jeans? If you really want to push it wear a bathing suit or your most revealing clothing…I can guarantee you’re not going to be in the mood to chow down.
10. Tongue scrape.
When I first heard about this, my immediate reaction was "what?". And then, "yeah, that's not for me". Then I learned that bacteria and little food particles live down in the papilla of your tongue (think of a carpet with dirt getting collecting at the bottom) and that brushing your tongue doesn’t remove that. In fact sometimes it pushes those particles deeper down. Gross. Interestingly (and disgustingly), those little food particles on your tongue make it so you still taste a hint of whatever it was you previously ate making you continue to crave that cookie. For anyone wanting to maintain good breath or their relationship tongue scraping is a nice practice to add.
11. Stop for a moment and ask yourself why you really want to eat.
Are you bored or stressed? Try listening to a favorite song or step outside for a short walk to feel refreshed and get a breath of fresh air. Procrastinating? Turn off distractions, get a glass of water or fancy Seedlip beverage, and set a timer for 30-60 minutes with a goal of what you want to accomplish. Re-evaluate if you still want something to eat after you've been productive and distracted yourself.
Ready to start getting sustainable results that leave you loving the way you feel in your body and mind? Let's connect!
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