This topic has come up in a few separate conversations this past week so thought I would do some research and start the dialog. Being stuck at home during this pandemic may have lead to some unhealthy behaviors, including overeating due to stress and boredom.
Whether we are back to work or still at home, how does one change this bad habit of stress eating?
- Check-in with Yourself: We first need to understand why it’s happening. Pause before that first bite and ask yourself are you eating because you are hungry or because you are stressed, bored, lonely or anxious?
- Remove Temptation: Easier said then done when you don’t live alone and have other palates to please. But instead of having that jar of cookies on the counter or other tempting foods within reach, store the pantry or cupboard. Out of sight, out of mind.
- Stick to a Meal Schedule: If you are used to eating 3x/day, continue with that schedule. If you have a snack mid-day. Have a snack mid-day. Little adjustments may need to be made but find the pattern that works for you.
- Don’t Restrict: To prevent overeating, do NOT deprive your body of food. Restricting or consuming too few calories can lead to binge eating. Your willpower will only last so long. And not to mention higher stress levels. More to come on this topic!
- Stay Hydrated: This is one of those habits I think we all could benefit from. Proper hydration is important for overall health and often our bodies are telling us we need water and not food. If you are like me and don’t love water, try adding a few slices of fruit or cucumbers to help you drink more without the calories.
- Get Moving: Make time each day for 30-minutes of some type of physical activity. This can help with boredom, stress and interrupting walks to the fridge/pantry.
- Practice Portion Control: This is something I have tried to instill in my kids from the very beginning. Don’t grab the whole bag, get a bowl and grab a handful. This goes for dips and ice cream as well. But you can eat all the chicken and broccoli you want!
- Stocking Kitchen w/nutritious foods: There is nothing more beautiful and satisfying then opening up a fridge full of color and nutritious foods. Pick foods high in protein, fiber (veggies) and healthy fats. These foods will not only satisfy you, they will help prevent overeating as well.
Bottom line, during stressful times, we need to keep our wellbeing in check. This is not the time to restrict, over exercise, try a fad diet, play the comparison game or focus on our weakness. Practice self-love and compassion and know we are doing the best we can, given the current circumstances.
A. Overhead Squat
B. AMRAP 18
– 5 OH Squat
– 10 Dips
– 15 Deck Squats
– 200m Run