It’s been weeks since America, and many other countries all over the world have been on virtual lockdown.
People are forced to stay cooped up at home to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
We all want to find ways to fight boredom and anxiety-induced food cravings. The question is, What do we do while stuck at home with a pantry full of food?
Social distancing imposed during this COVID-19 lockdown can result in an unwanted consequence – stress eating.
Anxiety has risen among many during this pandemic, and one way of easing the stress is eating your favorite comfort food.
Experts from Rush University Medical Center in Chicago share that emotional eating can be harmful both physically and mentally.
We share some tips from medical experts on how you can ward off unhealthy eating habits during COVID-19 quarantine.
Follow Regular Eating Schedules
Your eating routine before COVID-19 struck should be the same schedule you follow during the lockdown.
You should stick to it to help you from going into your cupboard for an unscheduled snack. Having an outline filled with many activities may help you forget about food and overeating.
Set a time for work, eating, relaxation, exercise, and talking with your family.
Being bored will eventually lead to more food intake.
Drink plenty of water and add juices, smoothies, and lemonade. This will keep you hydrated and satiated for longer periods.
One benefit of being stuck at home is that we have more time in hand. You don’t have to rush eating your food because you need to catch the bus on the way to work.
Eat slowly, relax, and chew your food. This will make you eat less and enjoy your meals.
Eat Healthy Meals
Don’t wait until you are hungry to plan your meals. Plan meals and snacks at the start of each day to avoid eating more than you should.
Processed food may be more convenient to prepare, but these foods make us overeat and are not healthy for you.
Avoid the tendency to fill your grocery cart with junk. Many wholesalers deliver fruits and veggies to your doorstep, which is a healthier alternative.
If you notice that you are on your seventh cup of coffee for the day, then you are part of the many who are eating due to stress.
Eating Nutella from the jar is another sign of gluttonous eating patterns stressed out people adopt in such stressful times like this.
Actress Naomi Watts has even posted a picture on Instagram eating a whole cake with her hands.
We should also keep an eye on our children as experts predict that child obesity could be the next epidemic.
Our kids are not immune to the stress due to COVID-19, apart from spending time on tablets and phones, snacking on unhealthy food can be heightened during this lockdown period.
It is essential to maintain a healthy diet during this time because it can help boost our immune system.
Take advantage of the time and prepare fresh and homecooked meals for your family.
Avoid Eating While Working From Home
If you are working from home, don’t turn your bedroom into your dining room. Eat at designated places in your home, keep work and relaxation areas separate from where you eat.
We know that our normal routines have been turned upside down. We usually have breakfast, then leave for work, have lunch, and eat dinner when we get home.
Now you may be working from home or may not have any work at all. Eating is a way to cope if we just got laid off from work.
Keep yourself busy by trying to find short term gigs while waiting for this pandemic to blow over.
Stress is another trigger for binge eating during this lockdown period. Exercise is an excellent way to beat stress and keep you healthy as well. You wouldn’t want to gain 20 pounds and feel lethargic while stuck indoors.
Do some household chores or reach out to a family member you haven’t talked to in a long time. Use technology like Skype or Zoom for video calls. There are many ways to manage stress and avoid stress-induced eating.
Minimal physical activity and eating anything you can lay your hands on will result in weight gain during this pandemic.
Binge-watching Netflix can turn into binge eating while watching Netflix.
Don’t make this lockdown an excuse for unwanted weight gain, treat it as a chance to gain your fitness level, and lose the extra weight.