A few of my clients have the biggest challenge after dinner. The Danger Zone. Night eating can sabotage any good eating routine. So here is rule #1. I love rules… just ask my kids and husband. Sometimes when you are given a rule to follow by a “third” party, it can be easier to follow. It can be non-negotiable. It will lead to good habits.
This rules apply whether it’s at home nibbling and snacking while you’re making dinner, (or right after work), or it’s snacking at night while the TV is on.
When there is junk in the house, overeating becomes VERY EASY. Almost effortless. You need to make it a little harder on yourself. If it’s easy to eat junk, you’ll eat during your danger zone. If it’s hard, it will make it that much harder… Especially during your danger zone. My danger zone is in the around 3 in the afternoon.
So that is the WHY, but more importantly is the HOW.
Eating actually makes a very deep groove in your brain. Sometimes it can be almost like a “math equation,” and your brain goes on automatic drive to make 1+2=3. If you always have a cup of coffee with a cinnamon roll, just the scent of coffee will most likely make you pick up a cinnamon roll.
1. 0%fat Greek yogurt with frozen fruit, cinnamon, and Kashi
2. Costco mango salsa with carrots (instead of chips)
3. Quinoa in my pot roast instead of potatoes
4. Low fat Swiss cheese
5. Broccoli steamed and sprinkled with a little fresh parmesan and fresh lemon
I know there are things out there that you like, and new things that you will try and end up enjoying. Don’t just start eliminating the junk without making new purchases and substitutions. You need to make new associations, too. If you’re trying to quit coffee, then “quit” something else you use to eat with it. Make new connections in your brain, a new “1+2=3.”