I’m going to start off by saying that I was going to try to get this out on my lunch break, but I’m running on 3 1/2 hours of sleep including waking up 19 times (29 minutes worth) and being restless 18 times (32 minutes worth). Why you ask? I had another gall stone. This time at 4:30 in the morning and it didn’t go away until just after I got to work.
Combining that with a 2 hour training on a new program we’ll be using at work didn’t exactly help me with words for the rest of the day. The gall stones really take a lot out of me. I’m so glad I have an appointment next month.
Anyway, onto this week’s topic which is late night eating. This is one issue that hasn’t really effected me much. I’m not sure why, but I’m glad because I have enough problems as it is… Don’t get me wrong, I have my moments, but that’s more emotional eating than late night cravings.
Some of the reasons they listed for WHY you crave food at night are:
- You’re still hungry – I know personally that if I didn’t eat enough healthy foods during the day, I will feel like I’m hungry at night.
- Reward after a rough day – I’m the queen of rough days and I am very familiar with wanting to reward myself for certain things. (Whether I deserve it or not…)
- Stress – This is a big one for me. I’m an emotional eater, and stress currently runs my life and it’s hard when you want to eat for emotional reasons.
- Deprivation – If you swear off certain foods (there are trigger foods for all of us that we really should stay away from but this is not what I’m talking about) like no dessert for the rest of your life (I know I’m exaggerating) or only eating a chicken breast with steamed vegetables and brown rice every night for dinner can make you feel deprived and the cravings for things like pizza, pasta, etc. can make you go insane with need.
And some of the things that can help with late night urges?:
- Smart snacking – clear out the trigger foods that are hard for you to be around. Anything for the family that you know is dangerous for you, put at the back of the fridge/cupboard. Out of sight, out of mind. Make sure you have lots of fruits and vegetables on hand to bulk up your snack (or if you feel it’s enough, have a piece of fruit for your snack).
- Keep dinner time distraction free – Eat dinner at a table instead of in front of the TV or your phone. It keeps you from taking your time with eating and before you know it, your dinner is gone. This is something I have a problem with but I do notice that if I eat slower, I will eat less.
- Start your daily points+ at dinner instead of in the morning – if night time really is a problem for you, start your points at night instead of in the morning so you have those points to save you.
Some other ideas that I personally have are:
- Brush your teeth – I have heard this tip before and it really does work. Toothpaste flavor mix with food is a nasty taste so I think just the mental image of that helps keep you from wanting to eat after brushing your teeth.
- Write in a journal/blog – if you are an emotional eater, it’s good to get your emotions out on paper. This is a good distraction because you’re hands are busy typing or writing down things.
- Take up a craft – if you’re knitting/crocheting a blanket, your hands are too busy to pick food up. I am a very crafty person and I often get involved in various projects.
- Drink Water – Try drinking a glass of water to see if you were in fact just thirsty. Often times when we feel hungry, we’re really just thirsty.
- Art Therapy – I love coloring. I feel like a kid again and it’s a great distraction from everyday life. Art therapy really is a thing. It’s often used for children who went through something traumatizing but really just coloring in a coloring book or sketching something is a form of art therapy (to me anyway).
- Have a healthy snack – if you truly can’t stay away from food or if you’re hungry (see above) have some fruit or a piece of toast with peanut butter on it.
- Go to bed – if all else fails and it’s late enough for you, go to bed… Try to clear your mind and hit the hay early…
I hope some of these tips help. I personally had a night where I wanted to eat everything in the house and I ended up eating a popsicle and going to bed and it worked. We can get through these moments, you just have to believe in yourself and plan for those hard moments.
Oh, I almost forgot… I lost another 1.4 pounds this week! That brings my total down to 17.6! I’m so excited!!!