by Laura Garrett, RD
(NAPS)—For many, controlling their weight starts with getting control of impulse eating. Often, in order to change behaviors, people must first acknowledge the patterns of behavior that lead them to eat impulsively.
It Starts With a List
One of the biggest culprits is going to the grocery store without a list. Supermarkets set up their aisles for impulse buying and quick hunger fixes. Breaking the behavior chain that leads to bad decisions often starts with changing routines. For example:
- Eat a piece of fruit before shopping.
- Create a shopping list template—keep copies in the car and add additional items as needed.
- Stick to the shopping list.
- Use coupons only for items on the list.
Learn How to Lunch
Workday lunches can be another opportunity for impulse eating to take hold. If you’re one of those workers who waits until 11:30 (after hunger has already set in) to decide where to go out for lunch or what to order in, you may find yourself often resorting to high-fat, high-calorie options like fast food. Here are some suggestions to make better choices:
- Have fruit at 10 a.m.
- Pack a brown-bag lunch the night before. This will also save money.
- Pack or purchase lunches on sliced bread. Rolls can have twice the calories of sliced bread.
- Salads are great, but measure the salad dressing or use vinegar.
Make Mealtime Meaningful
Sometimes, simple things can make a difference at mealtime. For instance:
- Choose carbohydrates that are low on the glycemic scale, such as fruits, veggies and whole grains.
- Take a supplement containing a white bean extract, Phase 2 Carb Controller, found in Natrol’s Carb Intercept, before eating a carb-rich meal.
- Count to 10 before grabbing something to eat.
- Make the slogan “The kitchen closes at 9 p.m.” a mind-set.
Today Is a Good Day to Begin
Making positive behavior changes to avoid impulse eating is an essential factor in health and weight management. Start today by becoming aware of those behaviors that lead you astray from your weight management goals.
For more information about health and wellness, visit www.livesowell.com.
Ms. Garrett is an RD and a certified diabetes educator.
Breaking the behavioral chain that leads to bad food decisions often starts with changing unconscious behaviors and habits.