(RxWiki News) In the new “normal” of a world that includes coronavirus, many of us have found ourselves working from home. And some of us are tempted to overeat when our pantries are in arm’s reach.
When we’re scared, threatened or sad, our instinct is to seek safety. And for a lot of us, food feels like safety. You may be finding it harder to continue eating healthy and remain physically active.
But just because you are home more and things are changing doesn’t mean your healthy plans have to be thrown out.
Follow these five tips to help you stay healthy while social distancing.
1) Listen to your body. You can do this by practicing the HALT method. HALT stands for Hungry, Angry, Lonely and Tired.
Have you ever eaten something and didn’t realize you had eaten the whole bag until after it was gone? This is called mindless eating, and it happens to the best of us.
To help you stop mindless eating, before your first bite, say “HALT.”
Before taking the first bite, ask yourself:
- H: Am I really hungry?
- A: Am I feeling anxious or angry about something?
- L: Am I lonely?
- T: Am I tired?
These questions are important because emotions like stress and loneliness can cause you to turn to food. People can also confuse tiredness for hunger.
The bottom line is to know whether you are truly hungry.
If you’re not hungry, there may be something else going on. If you’re feeling anxious, try breathing techniques. If you’re lonely, call a friend. And if you’re tired, take a nap.
2) Stick to a schedule. Plan your day. Include set time for chores, exercise, eating and work. This way, you prevent yourself from wandering into the kitchen throughout the day to snack.
3) Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of liquids like water, flavored water or carbonated water to keep you feeling full.
4) Redesign your kitchen. Your environment (or your space) can influence what and how you eat.
For example, foods that are visible or within easy reach are easier for you to grab when you’re hungry.
Take a look around your kitchen. Which foods are within easiest reach on your countertop? What about your pantry, cabinets and fridge?
One easy way to reorganize your kitchen is to move healthier foods to more visible areas or those within the easiest reach, such as your countertop or the front of the fridge. Next, move the not-so-healthy items to the back of the pantry, a higher shelf or somewhere hidden in the fridge. This quick move makes the not-so-healthy foods less accessible and less of a temptation.
5) Move your office away from the kitchen. Try to set up your work station away from the kitchen. Think “out of sight, out of mind.” If you can’t see the fridge, pantry or snacks, you’re less likely to be tempted.