Have you ever made a commitment to healthy eating and then accidentally left your lunch at home, had a crazy busy day, or been attacked by low blood sugar… completely overturning your best intentions? Unless you have a will of steel it can truly be discouraging, weakening your resolve to take responsibility for your health.
Susan shared this…
A couple of weeks ago I committed to a “New Philosophy of Life.” I really wanted to be the healthiest me I could be, so I joined My Fitness Pal, designed a diet with mostly plant based foods, and determined to go swimming three times a week. I also made the decision to be more mindful in everything I do, including eating.
Well… everything was going great until I went on vacation. Don’t get me wrong, she said, I was really careful even on vacation, but when I got home everything fell apart. I hadn’t remembered to go grocery shopping before I left, so when I got home there wasn’t any food in the house. On top of that, we got home late, so I didn’t get enough sleep before I went to work, and I didn’t have any clean laundry.
She continued …anyway, my downfall began with stopping at McDonalds for an Egg McMuffin (not too bad). I was so tired I drank 2 Diet Cokes to perk myself up (bad) and ate orange chicken and chow mien for lunch at Panda Express (really bad). On my way home from work I felt my blood sugar plummet and began to panic (that’s what low blood sugar does to me), so I stopped at a gas station and bought the biggest bag of peanut M&M’s I could find. I inhaled them all before I could even taste one (really, really bad). Before I knew it, a week had gone by and I hadn’t given any thought to my “New Philosophy of Life.” By then I had second thoughts about trying again. Sigh…
Does this sound familiar to you? It sure does to me.
I’m not going to tell you how to get more sleep or do your laundry, but…
I am going to give you 3 Tips for dealing with Urgent Eating. Jen Meister, in her blog, Simple – Clean – Whole, coined the term Urgent Eating, which describes exactly what Susan was talking about. Urgent Eating is eating out of urgency as well as convenience. Check out her post at: http://www.simplecleandandwhole.com
3 Tips to Stop Urgent Eating
In Jen’s post she wisely states, Preparation is your Insurance Policy for your Health and Well being…
Any sound plan for positive change requires preparation for success, including consideration of the obstacles in advance.
- Make a list of 5 potential situations that would be your perfect storm for falling off the wagon
- Rank them in order of highest risk to lowest risk
- Take a look at your list and identify which situations occur most often
After your analysis you will have the information you need to….
2. Write an Urgent Eating Plan:
- For each situation you listed above, write at least one strategy for avoiding or managing the situation.
Situation: After a long day at work I’m tired and grouchy. I haven’t had anything to eat since noon and it is now almost 6:00. I am hungry and know I won’t be eating dinner for at least an hour, considering I still have to make dinner. I start feeling sorry for myself and think that eating something sweet would not only taste good and fill the hole in my stomach, but be comforting after working so hard all day.
- Drink water throughout the day to create a sense of fullness. Add a lemon wedge to the water to make it taste, look, and feel, good.
- Eat a small snack around 3:00 i.e. 100 calorie yogurt or a handful of almonds.
- Listen to my favorite music or an audiobook on the drive home to distract myself and have fun.
- Have healthy portion controlled snacks available for the drive home.
3. Have Plenty of Healthy Non-Perishable Snacks (NPS) on Hand
- Always have a collection of NPS at home and work.
- For food emergencies keep 2 NPS in your purse or briefcase at all times.
- Always replace your emergency supply.
- When tempted to eat something unhealthy, quickly eat a NPS.
2. Write an Urgent Eating Plan
3. Have Plenty of NPS on Hand
Now for my secret weapon or should I say R-E-C-I-P-E?
A couple of years ago, Urgent Eating was my middle name. Fueled by the energy of frustration, I created this winning recipe to protect myself from those inevitable perfect storm situations. It’s been my weapon ever since.
The trick is to make a big batch of this tasty concoction and divide it into portion controlled serving sizes in advance. No need for guesswork in crisis situations ever again.
Secret Weapon Trail Mix
2 cups raw almonds
2 cups raw cashews
2 cups shelled pistachios
2 cups 60% Cacao chocolate chips
2 cups golden raisins
1 cup Craisins
1 cup dried cherries
Put all ingredients in a big bowl and mix well. For individual on-the-go servings, measure 1/4 cup of mix per snack sized ziplock bag.
Add this to your arsenal and keep on moving forward 🙂
Do you have perfect storm, urgent eating situations? What most likely will make you cave? Have you found any solutions you would be willing to share with our community of readers? We would love to hear from you.
Until next time, have a great week and…
Shine on 🙂
P.S. Don’t forget to vote yes or no on Pioneers of Peace: Red Cup post. In two weeks I will fill you in. Thanks 🙂
- Bad Eating Habits Can Be Broken (everydayfamily.com)