Serial Snacking, Steamed Veg, and Shut up Karen, no one cares about your sourdough starter.
One of the common themes we’ve seen or experienced in this dystopian nightmare we’re currently living in is people’s relationship with food. Whether it was early panic buying the shops dry, getting cheffy in the kitchen with all their time indoors, or simply posting about their weight gain/loss throughout lockdown.
The common theme through all of these is emotive. People find safety, comfort, reassurance in food. Whether it’s comfort eating, or knowing you have plenty of food for if everything went Pete Tong and you had to live like one of those Cold War preppers.
This isn’t a diagnosis, I just find it interesting. So, I’m going to list out some tips that can hopefully help you work towards whatever nutrition based goals you have, or would like to get back to working towards.This isn’t a diagnosis, I just find it interesting. So, I’m going to list out some tips that can hopefully help you work towards whatever nutrition based goals you have, or would like to get back to working towards.
Start small. The momentum generating effect of small concurrent successes can never be overstated. Rather than worry about meal prepping a week’s worth of food, or planning out a 12-week diet plan, just make your lunch for tomorrow. If you have enough ingredients handy, maybe even prep the next day. Then build on this first positive step, you’ve just freed up time you’d normally be making lunch tomorrow, maybe swing by the shops and grab some more stuff to prep more lunches?
Split your proteins. Proteins, especially meats, are usually the most costly part of people’s week to week food expense unless you have a serious taleggio addiction… they are also often the hardest part of the days’ meals to eat. As most people have found out in lockdown there’s only so much chicken you can choke. So, try and mix your proteins together, add some plant-based proteins like chickpeas or lentils. It’ll make your meat sources last longer, and bulks out your meals, as well as upping your fiber intake.
Use your time in lockdown to try new recipes. Honestly, I feel like the thing no one tells you about being an adult is how often ‘what should have for dinner?’ is asked. I encourage you to push the boat out and try something you’ve never made before. You may find an ingredient combo or sauce recipe that adds a new level to meal prep potential, as well as being something you can make for the people close to you.
We sometimes turn to ya boy Gordon Ramsay for some great food inspo and well explained tutorials.
Find your biggest calorie sink. Much like a large, overlooked expense finding which meal in the day is the biggest chunk of your calories is critical information. If 60% of your current calories come from your evening meal that’s the best place to start your rework. It will also likely be enough of a deficit to rework that one meal to get your numbers going in the direction you want. If you’re a serial snacker aim to consolidate that habit into 3-4 more complete meals through the day.
Try to find some introspection. They say know your enemy, well with regards to eating habits the enemy is you. As I mentioned earlier people seek a variety of emotions and feelings in food-related pastimes, and one of the biggest things you can do is to understand what drives your choices for your unhealthier eating habits. If you find that you typically comfort eat if you’re sad, or maybe you snack relentlessly when the work stress piles up. If you identify where these things typically happen you can help future you out a tonne. Don’t leave high-calorie snacks around where you work, if you’re feeling sad or low, try reaching out to friends to talk about it, or do an activity you enjoy and find relaxing, rather than food.
The current year has been an odd one, and I imagine it’s been a wake-up call for some people with regards to their health. As an asthmatic who skimps on the cardio in favor of being a meathead, I certainly have. I hope you’ve found something useful in these tips, and remember don’t be disheartened if you’ve let things slip and it all seems like a lot to start all over again. It’s worth it. Start small, build momentum. Feel free to ask anything in the comments, or hit me up on social media!
If you would like to learn more about setting up a structured diet plan, we have an article series on exactly that, just click here.