People write me and say that they stay happily on their ‘healthy lifestyle path,’ until the sun goes down. That’s when the demons (Halloween or not) come out in full force, tempting, teasing and pulling them mindlessly into the kitchen. Mindless – the operative word here. They awake from their stupor covered in crumbs, and they wonder, “Where did my focus, determination and resolve go? Who was that alien that took me over?”
Mindless eating occurs primarily at night, after dinner, when – after a long, sometimes difficult day – you sit down and relax. What to do? Understand it and plan for it!
Here, Janice Taylor, Weight Loss Coach and Our Lady of Weight Loss, the patron saint of permanent fat removal (she who guides her), give you:
10 Ways to Curb, Conquer and Control Nighttime Eating
1. Awareness First. Nighttime is often a vulnerable time of day. You might be tired. You may have said, “No, thank you,” numerous times throughout your day, and you’re worn down. It could be, more likely than not, that this is the first time that you are able to focus on your personal life and it’s bringing up anxiety. Know that you are not alone. We could all (me especially) blow a day of healthful eating within 10 minutes of nighttime snacking! Just knowing what to expect is helpful.
2. Keep Low-Fat, Low-Cal Snacks on Hand. It seems that our evening meals and snacks are higher in fat than breakfast or lunch, so it is especially important to make healthy nighttime choices. Perhaps some air popped popcorn, or a 1/2 cup of low-fat ice cream, or a little bit of protein.
3. Late Night Tea. Brew yourself a pot of delicious, decaffeinated tea and make it your end of night ritual. Nothing passes through your lips after the tea!
4. Get Creative. Like to knit, crochet, and/or cut & paste? Keeping your hands busy is helpful. The trick is to set up your ‘craft’ ahead of time. Just like you plan your meals; plan your after dinner activity. If you don’t have the yarn and crochet hook right there, next to the sofa, you are likely to take reach for food instead.
5. Get Busy. Many people eat at night because they are bored. Take a dance class or join a book club. Make your nights fun and interesting. Get out of the house!!! Socialize.
6. Turn Television Commercials Off. If seeing food is a trigger, mue the food commercials, switch the channel or turn it off!
7. Eat Breakfast. One study after the other shows that those who skip breakfast end up eating more calories by the end of the day.
8. Take A Breath. Step outside and breath some fresh air for a few minutes.
9. Stretch It Out. If you are watching TV, stand up, sit down and shake it all about! Get on your stationary bike or the treadmill.
10. Play Musical Chairs. Sometimes the simple act of ‘moving,’ ‘moves’ a craving, ‘moves’ a mood. Moving changes your internal state. Move from one chair to another.
More Weight Loss Wisdom, Creativity and Fun!
Halloween Orange: dieter’s friend or foe?
What’s YOUR Stay Fat Strategy?
Simple Strategies to give a boost to your mood!
Want to fill up on more happy? 21 Simple Ways to Be Happy (a Beliefnet special!!!)
Spread the word … NOT the Icing!
Reserve your seat at the Holiday Table!
The Holiday Diet: Wake Up Thinner!
Does your weight loss chart look like an EKG?
In need of a coach? Write Janice!
Required Reading:Our Lady of Weight Loss: Miraculous and Motivational Musings from the Patron Saint of Permanent Fat Removal an OPRAH BOOK CLUB pick: Summer 2009 – Buy NOW!
Write Janice Taylor, Weight Loss Coach, Certified Hypnotist, Author and 50-pound big-time-loser for an introductory one-on-one coaching session.