Day 3 of the Snacking Challenge in the Stop Binge Eating Community, we talk about how to stop unplanned snacking.
Today we're adding to the idea of physically and mentally nourishing foods. And I'm also sharing a few little changes that you can make to break your unplanned snacking habits and grazing habits (aka constant snacking)
A little disclaimer: I wouldn't advise you to prepare a large amount of food in advance. Because at this stage, it's probably not a good idea to have a lot of extra food lying around--probably do one or two days' worth max, or share with your friends and family.
But the reason I still want you to prepare your food in advance is that when you're hungry or you have to make some last minute changes, then you still have something you've planned and you wouldn't go into panic mode and stress eat.
I've always emphasized that you shouldn't restrict yourself. The reason I'm sharing a few recipes today is because thanks to diet culture, a lot of people think that a handful of raisins, or a rice cake or a couple of carrot sticks is a snack. But the truth is, those foods don't fill you up long and very soon, you'll be looking for more.
Protein, fats, complex carbohydrates, and fiber are some of the nutrients that take longer to digest and will keep you fuller for longer.
In the link below, I've shared three recipes that include some fats, proteins and more slowly digested carbs. Because these are the nutrients that keep us fuller for longer periods of time and they stabilize our blood sugars and therefore reduce our cravings.
If you've currently got some snacks that you like, you don't have to cut them out. Instead of cutting foods out, think about what you can add in. So for example, you love crackers, so instead of cutting them out because that's only carbs, think about what can you add to that to make the crackers more filling? Maybe some cream cheese? Or peanut butter? Or even top with some seeds, or yogurt, or fruit? Or have something else on the side?
Every evening, you decide what you're gonna eat and how much and then you spend a few minutes to prepare your snack.
I'd also write your meal plan on a post-it note to put on the fridge so that you're reminded of your plan when you're tempted to get something else. You wanna be removing as many barriers and triggers as possible in advance.
Another thing that I teach in Stop Binge Eating Program is how you can break your habits. So, if you find that you're snacking because your kids are eating, then make sure that when you make your plans, you're planning to have your snacks when it's their snack time. There's no reason you can't prepare the snacks for them too.
Another common scenario is that, if you find that whenever you're sitting on the couch, you tend to want a snack. Then, instead of having your snacks on the couch, make sure that when you have your snacks, have the snacks somewhere else, such as at the dining table. What that does is it actually signals to your brain that it's a meal time and then when you get up at the table. It helps to signal your brain again that the meal is over to help end that constant snacking.
No-bake Snack Bars
3/4 cup of Medjool Dates
1 cup of nuts (any kind will do OR you can sub sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds for a nut free version)
1 pinch of sea salt
Optional: ground oats/granola, add some dried fruit such as cranberries or raisins to change up the flavor
Combine all ingredients in the food processor until it forms a sticky dough. Line an 8 inch pan with plastic wrap.
Then pour the dough and press down firmly until it fills the pan.
Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before cutting into squares. Serve and enjoy!
Dark Chocolate Bark
2 cups (12 oz) dark chocolate chips or chocolate bar broken into chunks (aim for 70% cacao content or higher) (dairy-free & vegan options available)--or you can start from scratch making 1/4 cup coconut oil, 1/4 cup cocoa powder, 3 tbs honey
1 tbs nut butter
pinch of salt
choose your toppings:
shelled pistachios (unsalted), coarsely chopped
dried apricots, or dried cranberries
In a microwave-safe glass or ceramic bowl, heat chocolate on medium power in 20-sec intervals until melted; stir frequently until smooth. Do not overheat!
Add in 3/4 of your chosen toppings, folding gently until just combined.
Spread mixture onto parchment paper or foil-lined baking sheet.
Sprinkle the top with remaining pistachios + cranberries (+ salt if using).
Freeze or refrigerate until firm - about 2 hours. Cut or break into pieces.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Will keep up to 3 weeks - but it won’t last that long anyway!
Super-Simple Coconut Milk Yogurt
2 cans full-fat coconut milk
2 probiotic capsules
1. Open the probiotic capsules and empty contents into the blender. Blend with coconut milk.
2. Transfer to a sanitized glass jar (make sure it’s not still hot - you don’t want those probiotics to die).
3. Store it in a warm place for 24-48 hours. If it's not thick enough for you, you can let it ferment for another 24 hours.
4. Add your favourite yogurt toppings, and store the rest for up to a week in the fridge.
Serve & enjoy!
Tip: Fermenting food is not an exact science. If this doesn’t work out as you’d like it to, try different brands of coconut milk and/or probiotics.
Resources to help you stop binge eating:
1.The 3+2+0 Guide to Stop Binge Eating
2.The Stop Binge Eating Program and the short-term strategy package (special offer!)
3. The Stop Binge Eating Facebook Community