I even felt this on the lead up to the lock down last week. For some reason in clinic I seemed to feel hungrier and was having fantasises about foods I would not normally think about (a roll and sausage, chips and doughnuts!!)
So, what can you do to reduce the impact of the lockdown that we have entered on your weight loss diet?
I’ve written down my best advice to help in these uncertain times.
- Try to keep in the routine you are normally in when you are working, or the kids are at school. Get up and have breakfast, lunch and evening meal around the same time.
- Do not be tempted to skip meals or have brunch instead of breakfast. You will be more likely to be over hungry and eat more.
- When choosing to make a brunch, you often choose higher fat and energy foods like, sausages, bacon, sausage rolls, French toast and croissants etc. So, it is best to try to avoid this.
- Keep your water intake up because if you are dehydrated you are more likely to feel hungry and reach for snacking foods. If you have a water bottle, make sure you are drinking from it regularly, or make sure you are recording how much water you are drinking by jotting it down.
- Try to plan your meals with what you have in your cupboards. There will be something you can make even if it’s just a nutritious snack meal like an omelette, beans on toast etc.
- Lay out your allotted snacks for the day in the morning. This way, you can decide if you eat them all at the one time or spread throughout the day.
- Try to keep physically and mentally active, this way it will keep you distracted from wanting to pick at food.
- Shop normally! Don’t over-stock, it’s not Christmas we don’t need a load of goodies! Leave them on the shelves – just because they are there doesn’t mean you need to buy them.
- If you find you are moving around a lot less than you would normally, then be careful of your overall energy and calorie intake as you are going to need a bit less.
- If you need to reduce your energy due to lack of movement, look at the more energy dense foods first like cakes, biscuits, chocolate and crisps etc these are the better options to reduce if needing to watch your energy intake.
- If you find it hard to get fresh veggies and fruit remember than frozen and tinned are suitable options.
- If you are struggling to get chicken/meat at the supermarkets remember beans, lentils and pulses are a good alternative which can easily be substituted into curries, casseroles instead of meat.
- Eat slowly, chew your food well this way you will get the feeling of fullness quicker.
- Measure your hunger score if you feel that you need to eat between meals. Are you genuinely hungry or head hungry? Measure you hunger with 1 being not hungry and 10 being starving. If you are around a 5 then have a drink of water do something else and review it in 10 min if still hungry then have a suitable snack i.e. fruit, veggie sticks, yoghurt, oatcake with spreading cheese.
- Finally if you do eat more than you were planning reflect on what happened that day were you stressed, worried, upset if so look at how you manage the effects of this the next time you feel this way.
Lesley, Dietitian for The Slimming Clinic
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