Did your emergency quarantine snack supply *disappear* by day three? Do you find yourself heeding to the siren call of the fridge more often than normal? Or perhaps your scheduled walks in the garden have transitioned to regular strolls to the pantry?
If you answered yes to both questions, then welcome fellow-snacker, we feel you, you’re in a safe #nojudgment zone.
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With everything going on in the world it’s totally understandable if you’ve let it slip a little. Social distancing has introduced an unprecedented ‘sameness’ to your daily routine that gives way to boredom, which often results in unnecessary snacking. Then, combine boredom with the fact that you’re frequenting the supermarket less so shopping bigger when you do, there’s no wonder you’re drilling through supplies at record speed!
So, if you’re struggling to adjust to this new work set-up and have turned to excessive and unhealthy snacking to cope – don’t stress, we feel you! Ahead are some practical tips for kicking the unhealthy habit.
Rethink your workspace
If you’re finding that your current work zone is enabling your unhealthy eating habits, then you might want to consider moving to a different location in the house. Ideally you want a spot that isn’t right next to the kitchen (or is your kitchen) to help prevent unnecessary snacking. As the old saying goes, “out of sight, out of mind.”
Don’t go to the supermarket hungry
The first rule of thumb to avoid a basket full of beige? Don’t go to the supermarket on an empty stomach! If you’re shopping hungry you’re far more likely to stock up on the wrong foods. If this sounds like you, make sure to go shopping after a heart (nutritious) meal.
Research tells us that when dehydrated, people tend to eat more because we mistake the feeling of thirst for hunger. This is why upping your fluid intake while sitting on your work chair at home is key to avoid overeating.
We recommend setting an alarm every hour or so to remind you to get up and hydrate, alternatively here are our favourite apps that help you keep track of your hydration.
Make a schedule and stick to it
Seasoned remote workers swear by routines and for good reason; they help you streamline your day and keep you productive. Having a set schedule for not just your work hours, but your breakfast, lunch and dinner times can help you avoid mindless eating when you’re in the middle of work.
Use smaller plates and bowls
But seriously, it works. We tend to eat with our eyes so if you fill up one large bowl you ‘think’ you need to finish it to feel satisfied. We’re the first to admit we ALWAYS cook waaay too much pasta and ALWAYS eat it all instead of saving it for tomorrow. Instead measure out your portions to fill a smaller bowl.
Check in with yourself
During stress-ridden times like this, most people turn to food for comfort. Nutritional therapist and work-from-home veteran Wilma Macdonald recommends taking apersonal inventory before hitting the snack cupboard.
Simply asking yourself why you need to eat a bag of chips can help determine whether you’re eating out of boredom, stress, loneliness or even annoyance.
“We eat our emotions from time to time. Feel those feelings — especially now — then have a drink of water,” says Macdonald.
Swearing off treats altogether is unrealistic and totally not necessary. Instead of cutting yourself off from your favourite snacks entirely, learn to indulge mindfully and purposefully.
During your grocery run, prioritise whole foods like fruits, nuts and veggies. So, when the call of the fridge is too strong to resist, it’s stocked with foods you won’t regret eating later