Planning Ahead For The Boredom Snack Attack: Set Yourself Up For Success With Healthy Options

With the weather cooling down and the majority of the outdoor activities coming to an end, most of us will find ourselves spending much more time indoors. We must also face the fact that for the next four months or so we’ll experience shorter days and longer nights. Soon, we will be eating dinner when the sun has set for the evening and nightfall is upon us.

During the summer months it doesn’t take much creativity to discover outdoor activities to keep us occupied until we’re ready to call it a day. But during the winter months it’s not so easy to do.

Snacking After Dark

For me, boredom kicks in after dinner when everything from the supper table is cleaned up and put away. It doesn’t help that during this time of year, I tend to take my daily walk before dinner –- not after — since I don’t feel comfortable walking in the dark. This causes me to have more time on my hands once evening arrives.

I focus on chores, but when I’m ready to relax in front of the television I have a tendency to do something I don’t like: I will take a trip to the kitchen in order to browse the cupboards and the refrigerator. It’s a habit that I’m not proud of and I will say that I do it much less than I used to years ago, but it hasn’t ended completely. I have found that since I will do this “browsing” on occasion I simply keep healthy food in those places; in fact, I don’t even purchase junk food because I don’t need it there staring me in the face!

Preparing for Temptation

Remember, I’m just a normal person who has to deal with food cravings and situations just like everyone else. I love the taste of good food but I also love being thin and healthy. I appreciate that I am no longer morbidly obese and that those years are long gone. But, there are times when I may want to eat something when I’m not hungry, hey it happens—I’m human.

Stocking Up on Healthy Snacks

So if I want to eat out of boredom, at least the items available in my cupboard or refrigerator are not unhealthy items – they are healthy foods.  I always keep low-fat microwave popcorn in the cupboard and often you’ll find a bag of low-fat pretzels readily available. You may also see some whole wheat crackers, raw almonds, or one of my family’s favorites: dried edamame, which is basically a fancy name for boiled green soybeans! They are a delicious and very healthy crunchy snack that I keep in the cupboard instead of my old standby: fatty potato chips. Check out the nutrition information on edamame, you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Edamame, aka soybeans are also a great source of calcium!

Skipping the Sugary Soda

When it comes to the contents of my refrigerator: grapes, apples, pears, mushrooms, bell peppers, fingerling carrots, hummus, dill pickles, yogurt and raisins are what you will see. You’ll also notice a gallon of skim milk, freshly brewed iced tea and miscellaneous bottles of water, some containing a flavored tea bag floating inside! You will NOT find sugary beverages since those are not even allowed in this house.

I understand how feeling bored can lead to mindless eating when I’m not hungry. This habit contributed to my weight hitting the three-hundred-pound mark. I didn’t arrive at that weight because I stayed away from the kitchen and exercised daily. No, I became that size because I allowed an excess of unhealthy food to consume my life, eating whether I was hungry or not.

That will not happen again. Sure, there are times I may give into eating when I’m not hungry, but at least it won’t be unhealthy food – my body is too important to me now, both inside and out!

Consuming healthy food is my only choice and it can be yours too – all it takes is the decision to DO IT! Will you?

Photo Credit Alex Campos

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