As we continue to follow stay at home orders and minimize our trips out of the house, our food environment has potentially changed A LOT. Many of us are used to going to an office all day and bringing a lunch or heading out at lunchtime. Now we are home and the kitchen is steps away. We have also been told to stock up on food, especially non perishables, to make sure we are safe for isolation if needed. Being home with a lot of food around can be stressful! Today I am sharing 3 tips to help combat the overwhelm that can pop up when food is always nearby.
- Give yourself unconditional permission to eatThe 3rd principle of Intuitive Eating is “Make Peace with Food”. What does it mean to make peace with food? This means giving yourself unconditional permission to EAT! And to eat anything you desire in the amount that will satisfy you. This might sound counterintuitive, but it really does work to stop the food obsession. When we deprive ourselves of certain foods, they only become more desirable! (have you ever told a kid they can’t have something? What’s the next thing they’re asking for? Same idea here!). The more permission you have around food, the more you can tune into what you really want and enjoy it.
Eat regular meals throughout the day
Another way to become crazy around food is to not eat enough. When you go too long without eating, or don’t eat enough at your meals throughout the day, you end up #HANGRY! Yes, that’s a real thing! Low blood sugar can cause irritability and make you tense. Eating too little is also a form of deprivation that can lead to overeating later. When your body doesn’t have enough energy, it goes into survival mode and is focused on eating enough to sustain you whenever it gets the chance since you might not get enough at another meal. The more you maintain regular meals, the more you will be able to think clearly and function at your best.
Eat with others
I have mentioned this in previous posts, and I still think it is important! If you are recovering from an eating disorder and are feeling stressed because you are eating challenging foods, eating with others can be so helpful! You might be without the support of your dietitian or treatment team during this time, but there are workarounds. Try to have FaceTime meal dates with your personal support system or virtual meal sessions with professional support. @covid19eatingsupport is a great resource on Instagram providing live meal support hourly!
If you don’t struggle with an eating disorder, this tip can still be beneficial! When you eat with others you have the opportunity to connect to both the food AND the company. When you connect with people, you are more likely to savor the experience and be able to more calmly have your meal without obsessing over what you ate. Now is a great time to plan virtual meals with people who are far away and you might not normally see. Give it a try!