Contributed by – Healthians team
Quarantine has drastically changed our eating habits, won’t you agree?. For foodies, life has become a bit more challenging. While eating out is not an option and ordering-in seems risky, the only options in sight are either to grab packaged junk or to cook to satiate those cravings that crop up at any hour. While it would be ideal to cook every time you feel hungry, the reality is that you would grab that pack of chips or cookies. And while you understand the problem of eating junk so often, you aren’t sure about ways to beat cravings amid stress. Well, here’s what you can do.
Drink more and more water
At times your cravings are nothing but thirst. Sometimes, your body cannot distinguish between hunger and thirst and you end up with a sudden craving for a certain food. Whenever it happens again, drink a large glass of water and wait for some time. Your craving may vanish.
Plan your meals in advance
Planning can simplify even the toughest tasks. Take some time out of your day and plan your next day’s meal (if possible, next week’s meal) in advance. How will this help, you ask? When your mind knows what is coming next, it’ll not make sudden unexplained demands.
Always have a healthy snack ready
Another part of planning! Have a healthy snack ready at all times. It can be as simple as a salad or cut fruits or a mix of dry fruits. This way, if you do feel uncomfortably hungry, you’ll have something healthy to munch on.
Talk yourself out of it
If all of a sudden chocolate cookies are all you can think about, remind yourself as to why you cannot and should not have them. Remind yourself of all the other things that you can do or have which will not harm your body like a cookie would. You can also prepare a list of the negative impacts of these cravings for such a moment.
Engage yourself in activities you like
Taking your mind off something can seem difficult but once you get a hang of it, your life will get much better. A simple way to do it is to start doing something that you truly enjoy. So, if your mind demands a burger, distract yourself with an episode of your favorite web series. And you’ll notice that the craving is gone.
Stress is the biggest culprit of cravings at odd hours. When you are stressed your body produces cortisol which makes your hungry. Here, you need to work on stress management. Although there are a lot of ways which can help in releasing stress but not everything works for everyone. Someone might find exercising helpful while some might find listening to music relaxing. So, try different methods and find what works best for you.
Understand what triggers you
When it comes to food, just an image of it on your Instagram feed can make your mouth water. Other times, you might crave for something if you stay up late at night. Once you start understanding what triggers your cravings, then you can work on avoiding them. If it’s social media, then you can try to unfollow those pages or people. If it’s because of staying up till late, then you can get into the habit of sleeping early. Just find the reason and the activity to deviate your mind from it.
Clean your kitchen
No, we don’t mean clean and disinfect it. (you should be doing that regularly, though) What we are trying to say here is to remove all the junk food that you have stored in cupboards. So, the next time you crave junk food you won’t have it readily available and the thought of going to the market to get it might stop the craving.
Food cravings and unhealthy eating choices during the lockdown are something that most people are dealing with. As the lockdown was implemented, hashtags like #quarantinefood started trending on Instagram with over 217K posts at the moment. Food of any kind in itself isn’t good or bad, however, if you’ve started to notice that your cravings are excessive then it means there is a problem which you need to resolve.
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