Are you actually hungry, or are you just bored? Sometimes people eat because they have nothing better to do, it is usually done without thinking. Boredom eating, and mindless eating is the worst kind. Not only will you eat more, but you will eat a lot of the worst foods. If you feel it’s time to establish a new and healthier eating routine it will begin with being more mindful when eating.
When people are trying to become more mindful of their eating, and to prevent eating out of boredom they begin with a food Journal. Your food Journal should include your daily consumption, with a list of calories, possibly how you’re feeling at the time, and any additional food facts. Pattern recognition over time will let you know whether you are eating more out of boredom or what times of the day your most bored and eating out of boredom. Identify with the times that you are actually hungry, ask yourself on a scale 1 to 10 how hungry you actually feel. It’s up to seven or more than you can eat something otherwise try and refrain from eating until your actual meal time.
Try alternatives to eating, such as hobbies, other interests, or spending time with loved ones. If you can think of anything make an activity jar, fill a jar with different things to do and when you feel hungrier or bring one of the activities out. You can also use this time to deal with chores or things you’ve been putting off. The best activities are the ones that occupy your hands. You could give yourself a manicure, or pedicure, do needlework, typing, or learn to play an instrument. You can also utilize this free time to learn a new skill. No matter what you do, concentrate on what you’re doing, force yourself to focus.
You can also prevent eating out of boredom by exercising. If you begin to feel hungry go for a walk, jog, or run. If you go outside and change your environment your hunger and cravings should subside. It may also be helpful for you to chew some gum, it is low in calories and quite refreshing. It may help you burn calories and curb your appetite.
There are also things to avoid when trying to prevent eating out of boredom. Avoid keeping food in your bedroom. Have a designated table in your house for eating and drinking only, and eat and drink only at the table. Stashing food in your room can be a big temptation. Additionally, identify the foods that you most commonly reach for when you’re bored and avoid buying them and having them in your home. Choose only nutritious foods for your home. Whole foods that are replenishing and full of natural vitamins, minerals, and nutrients are best.
When it comes to the prevention of eating out of boredom, or mindless eating it is best to schedule all of your meals and include small nutritious snacks between meals. Eating on a schedule is very beneficial to your health as well as the prevention of cravings and hunger. There are also foods that you can eat between your snacks and meals if you are absolutely hungry such as celery or watermelon which have high water content and not very many calories. It is also important to drink lots of water to prevent mindless or boredom eating. Often our body’s can confuse hunger and thirst so it is vital to keep hydrated in order to prevent the body from confusing the two.