Mitigating Mindless Munching

10 tips on curbing continual consumption

Let’s face it, we all do it sometimes. Maybe that bag of pistachios you just can’t stop eating, those chips you just can’t stop dipping; the trail mix that you keep digging into. Welcome to the mindless munching zone. This habit of non-stop snacking will put weight on you. But, you can stop.  Here are eight great tips on how you can mitigate that mindless munching.

1.)    Don’t Skip Meals  - Eating three or more meals per day,  while exercising portion control, will keep you feeling full all day long. This will prevent you from reaching for the Cheetos. When you skip meal blood sugar plummets and that is when the munchies begin.

2.)    Play Hide But No Seek – Don’t keep snack foods within your immediate vision. No candy jars on the desk or baskets of snacks within reach. Hide them away and they won’t be top of mind.

3.)    Hydrate – 70% of hunger pangs are actually a sign of being dehydrated. Keep a glass of water or tea in front of you at all times and sip it. Feeling hungry? Take a sip. This will also help you discern whether you are indeed in need to feed or just thirsty.

4.)    Think About It – Close your eyes and really feel what your hunger is. Is it just hunger to compensate for envious or anxious feelings? Feel it. Welcome it in and let it pass. Then have another sip.

5.)    Chew It Over – Having a piece of sugar free gum in your mouth has shown to curb hunger over 80% of the time. Keep a pack of gum and in moments of a food crisis chew a piece.

6.)    Laugh It Off – If you are really deep into a moment of cheating with the chips. Think of something funny. Force yourself into a laugh. A recent study revealed that laughter reduced thoughts of food dramatically. So, have a laugh.

7.)    Take A Breath and Breathe Hunger Away - Stress causes your body to pump out cortisol. And this, ultimately, creates a resistance to leptin, a hormone that helps you feel full. Short-circuit this problem with stress busting breathing exercises. Exhale fully, counting to five as you release tension from your body; let your shoulders slump as if you’re a deflated balloon. Then count to five as you inhale gently, fully, down through the lungs into your belly; hold for a four-count. Repeat. Practice this when you feel inclined to make tracks to the snack stash.

8.)    Kick up The Proteins – If you really really need to snack pick foods that are high in protein. Foods like turkey breast and hard boiled eggs make great snacks. Combine them with some celery sticks will balance you out and keep you on your feet. Raw almonds work well too since they have properties that balance blood sugar. Make sure that you stay away from processed mystery meats like cold cuts, bologna… etc. since that are super high in sodium and often contain sugar.

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