What to do if you snack too much whilst preparing dinner.
Here are some tips to help you if you find yourself having a snack too much whilst preparing dinner or snacking too much while you cook. Sometimes we end up eating so much food while we prepare our dinner, that we tend to eat an entire meal before our dinner is even ready. So when we go to eat our dinner, we are basically eating a second meal.
First of all, we need to observe whether it is habit or if we are actually just very hungry when we are preparing our dinner. Snacking while you are preparing your meal often happens when you come home and you are very stressed and hungry. Applying just one or two of these tips may work for you…
Tip 1: Don’t cook on an empty stomach.
When you cook, make sure you eat a small snack before. If you tend to come home hungry, make sure you have a snack in the afternoon around 3pm. For example, some nuts or peanut butter on few slices of apple or rice crackers with hummus. You want to make sure you don’t come home with an empty stomach. Have some snacks in the car which you can have on the way home.
Tip 2: Take a breather.
If you don’t end up having a snack at all or you still come home hungry, take a moment to have a break. This doesn’t have to be half an hour, it can just be 5 – 10 minutes where you take the time to breathe. Just breathe in and out and relax your shoulders and your body. Allow your body to slow down. If you are hungry, have something small like a piece of cheese or fruit.
Tip 3: While you’re cooking, put out a small plate.
Maybe there are certain foods you like to eat when you are cooking. Try putting out a small plate and put some food on it, such as crackers and cheese or some carrots. Include good fats and foods with fibre and try to avoid sweet treats. This helps you to stay satisfied before dinner.
Tip 4: Have a warm drink while you’re cooking.
Have a warm drink while you’re cooking so you have something to sip on. A warm drink will soothe your stomach and keep you satisfied. I like to drink rooibus tea with some cream.
Tip 5: Jump.
This tip is one of my favourites because it is fun. When you find yourself going into the habit of snacking while you’re preparing your meal, snap out of it and just start jumping. When you’re jumping you can’t snack. Jumping makes your heart beat rise and when you stop, you won’t feel like eating. If you are eating even though you are not hungry, you are most likely just bored, it is an engrained habit, food is your visual trigger or you are tired. Jumping will give you energy, entertain you and break the habit.
Now enjoy jumping and let me know if it’s helped you.
If you find yourself eating mindlessly too often and it is affecting your weight, health and maybe even mental state, practice mindful eating can be very beneficial. A lot of research shows that mindful eating can help with weight loss, eat when you are hungry and stop when you are full and re-connect your body with the mind to understand your hunger cues better.
To help you to get started with Mindful Eating, I have developed a free Mindful Eating guide for you which will help you to connect with your hunger cues, to manage your emotions without using food for comfort and understand why you eat, even if you are not hungry.
Download the FREE guide below and get instant access.