Ways to Avoid Overeating When Working From HomePosted: Mar 11 in Lifestyle by Staff
Working from home can be stressful for several reasons. For one, these are stressful times – and you may not be working from home out of choice. Moreover, the home setup may not be ideal for work for everyone. Under these stressful conditions, you may turn to food for comfort. Secondly, the food is there, the kitchen is there, and no one is judging you for snacking every hour.
Unless you take definite measures to control your eating, you might find it difficult not to overeat as you work from home. The following strategies will help you overcome the temptation to eat mindlessly when working from home.
- Set meal times
Set aside regular times for eating, just as you would in an office. For instance, have breakfast at 8:00am, take a coffee break at 10:00am; then lunch at 1:00pm; a tea break at 4:00pm; then dinner at 7:00pm.
If you are the type that becomes engrossed in work and forgets to eat, set an alarm. You could vary the above schedule depending on your preferences. However, don’t wait more than six hours before eating, as you run the risk of being famished and thus overeating.
- Cook in bulk
You may find it hard to put aside time to prepare proper meals. To overcome this, cook in bulk in advance – perhaps over the weekend – and freeze the food according to safe food storage standards. Then all you do is reheat the pre-prepared meal or part of a meal. Include a protein, a complex carbohydrate, healthy fat, and vitamins and minerals in the form of fruit and vegetables in every meal.
- Eat without distractions
When it’s time to eat, put aside your work, don’t watch TV, and don’t allow distractions. If possible, eat away from your workstation and the kitchen. According to The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, being distracted at mealtimes makes people eat more than they otherwise would. Studies reviewed by the journal suggest that concentrating on eating may help in weight loss, even without calorie counting.
- Drink enough water
Keep some water next to your desk and drink throughout the day. Before you reach out for an unhealthy snack, ask yourself if you are perhaps thirsty. Fatigue and headaches may be brought on by dehydration and you could mistake thirst for hunger.
- Distinguish between emotional and physical hunger
During stressful times, it’s easy to turn to food for comfort or to take your mind off troubling emotions. You’re more likely to do this when you’re working from home than at the office because food is easily accessible at home.
Before you reach out for a snack, ask yourself if you’re eating because you are hungry, angry, lonely, or tired. Only eat if you’re hungry, and at the times you’ve set aside for meals. Devise ways of dealing with anger, loneliness, and tiredness.
The above strategies will help you avoid overeating as you work from home. However, your relationship with food is unique to you. As you apply the tactics, take into consideration your food likes and dislikes, your lifestyle, and your living arrangements. Personalize the strategies and see what works for you.