Listen, most people don’t have a problem with eating too little, and if they do, this article is not for them. This is for the people who love to eat. I love to eat, too. In early 2013, I went on a diet. I had never been on a diet before. I started calorie counting and trying to stay within a certain range. As a result I’ve learned a lot about myself so I will share this info.
I’ve learned one of the easiest ways to lose weight is to stop eating food late at night. The reason this works so well is because it’s very likely that you’ve already ate all the calories you need to eat already by nightfall. Anything you eat after 6-7pm is quite likely to be excess!
So it’s 10pm and you are feeling peckish, but you’ve already had enough food for the day. What do you do? How do you stop?
Sleep: For me the best thing to do is to go to sleep. Usually the longer I stay awake, the more likely I’m going to eat something. It’s like shopping, the longer I spend in a store, the more likely I’m going to find something I want to buy. Not sleeping enough in general also messes with your appetite and makes you crave sugars and whatnot as well.
- Floss and brush your teeth. We don’t particularly want to dirty our teeth after we do this and it’s a good signal to the brain that eating is over with.
- Drink a lot of water. Drink sparkling water. Drink tea with no sugar in it. Anything to help keep your mouth busy to help with the oral fixation. It also helps stimulate the stomach and make it feel like it’s got something to play with. Besides, we often confuse thirst with hunger.
- Eat in your underwear looking at yourself in the mirror. I doubt you’d gobble up brownie after brownie in this scenario. (Relax, I say this more in jest than anything else.)
If you must eat…
Often times we just want to munch on something. We have an oral fixation we just want to fulfill. We want to keep our mouths busy. We might get bored and just gravitate toward the kitchen and start opening the pantries and fridge. Yeah, we all do that from time to time. However, it’s important we don’t make a habit of this. And if it’s a habit already, then maybe we should replace it with a fresh habit.
A good rule of thumb is to eat stuff low in sugars and high in fiber so it feels filling.
- Go for some vegetables… Grab some red/yellow/orange bell peppers and slice them up. You wouldn’t believe how filling a bowl of that stuff is. Or maybe bite into a delicious tomato. Put some pepper on it to make it yummy. How about some cucumbers? They’re SO refreshing. (Or how about tomatoes and cucumbers, whoa!).. But seriously, veggies are awesome. Broccoli and cauliflower are dank too. And so on.
- If you are in the mood for fruits, be careful: Fruits contain lots of sugars! A single banana is 100 calories and can be consumed in just a minute! A single orange can be 70 calories. A tiny half cup (a mere 4oz!) of OJ is 60 calories.
- So what kind of fruits is one to eat? BERRIES! Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries! Berries are extremely low in sugar, yet somehow they taste so delicious! Check this out:
- Fifty blueberries are just 40 calories. Freeze them and pop them in your mouth one by one.
- Ten medium strawberries are just 40 calories.
- Ten raspberries are just 10 calories.
- A bowl of 50 blueberries, 10 strawberries and 10 raspberries would still be less calories than a single banana! (1 banana=100 calories) Now don’t get me wrong, I love bananas and even make “ice cream” with it, but it’s 10pm and we are trying to be conscious of how much we’re consuming, right? RIGHT!
Another food that helps you just munch on stuff without consuming too many calories is popcorn (go for the plain popcorn). It’s also a nice snack to just pour a cup (only a cup!) of plain cheerios into a bowl with no milk and just eat them one by one.
And remember, it’s very likely you’re not hungry and you just need some water! When you feel like you need to eat something, but you can’t figure out what it is, it’s water. It’s always water.
Hope that helps!