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Mindless Snacking: 6 Tips to Save Your Waistline


Mindless Snacking

If losing weight is your goal, hear this: you will not do it through starvation, obsessively counting calories or just wishing that magically a few kilos might fall off. You know the drill: move more, eat well, sleep 8 hours and repeat.

While it can be frustrating to look at it as a sustainable lifestyle change rather than a quick-fix diet or exercise plan, there are a few small tricks than can help along the way. The little one-percenters that can really start to add up over the course of a week.

I’m not inhuman – like everyone I’ve been guilty of mindless eating. I get bored, I reach for a snack. I get sad, I reach for a snack. I turn on the TV, i reach for a snack. I’m anxious, I reach for….well, you get it. Mindless snacking can be surprisingly detrimental to your weight loss (or maintenance) goals, so over the past 6 months I’ve been learning to deal with this stuff in other ways – like reading a book, walking, or getting lost on Pinterest. Sometimes though, distraction just isn’t enough. I’ve listed a few tips below that have had the biggest impact on my mindless snacking.

Stick with it for a few weeks and you’ll start to notice a difference.

 

1. Don’t keep food out on counters

Food within eye sight or easy reach will just prompt you to question whether you fancy some. Your body will tell you when it’s good and ready for more food, so why leave it on display? You won’t forget to eat, I promise.

 

2. Don’t hang out in the kitchen

For many the kitchen is the heart of the home, but that doesn’t mean you need to be in there all the time. Enjoy the space for prepping and enjoying your food, and then move to other parts of the house. You don’t need a TV in the kitchen, or your laptop, or anything else that’s going to make it more appealing to be in there longer than you need to be. Relaxing around food can recipe for disaster.

 

3. Wrap up leftovers 

Don’t leave food open to the elements (and your hands). Wrapping it up in foil or cling wrap will mean you have to consciously unwrap it to eat it – a little deterrent for wandering hands.

 

4. Downsize your plates

It’s not rocket science – if you have big bowls and plates, you’re more likely to serve bigger portions. Opt for smaller dishes and save yourself the stomach ache.

 

5. Clean up your pantry

While I’m a total advocate of treating yourself to something you love every once in a while that may not be so healthy, it’s not something you need constant access to. Buy ‘treat’ food on the day you plan to enjoy it, and keep it out of the house at other times. Don’t mess with temptation – it’s tiring and always seems to win.

 

6. Present food on plates, not from serving bowls

This is great tip if you’re prone to second helpings. Portion on the food on your plate, and leave it at that. Having bowls of leftovers in front of you while you’re waiting for your first helping to hit your stomach is a bad idea. Give yourself 20 minutes after your first serving before deciding if you really need more food. Chances are, you won’t.

 

Do you have any tricks that have helped you keep your hand out of the cookie jar? I’d love to hear them!

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About Sally O'Neil - Editor in Chief

Sal is on a mission to prove that healthy and nutritious doesn’t have to be boring – and that even while staying in shape you can have your cake and eat it too. After losing 14kg from adopting a healthier lifestyle, she shares her journey with others on The Fit Foodie Blog. She also writes for two national health magazines, has launched her own range of healthy Protein Ball Mixes: Fit Mixes, and is the author of Chocolate Everyday.

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Posted under: healthy eating, snacking, tips

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