Don't sabotage your workout routines with unhealthy binge eating. Instead, find out what you need to do to stop the binging.
Eating so you're full and satisfied, rather than giving in to emotional overeating to fill a void or simply because the food is there, takes some planning—and a few good strategies. Here they are:
Healthy eating tips # 1. Identify high-risk situations.
Few people overeat in every situation, so determine the circumstances that are likely to trigger a binge. Once you've identified which situations are most likely to spark emotional overeating, come up with a game plan for each one. For example, if eating at relatives' always involves plentiful gooey desserts, plan to make or buy a low-fat dessert, and bring it with you for everyone to share. If you can't go to the movies without snacking on something, sneak in your own bag of air-popped popcorn or some low-cal candy.
Healthy eating tips # 2. Keep a record of what you put in your mouth in a food diary.
In a study at the Center for Behavioral Medicine in Chicago, researchers asked 38 people who were trying to lose weight to keep a food diary; doing so not only helped them control their weight during high-risk holidays, but even helped them peel off unwanted pounds. Keep it simple—it doesn't have to include total calories or fat grams—but don't forget to jot down snacks or drinks, which can add up. You need to maintain a record at least 75 percent of the time for a food diary to be effective.
Healthy eating tips # 3. Explore food-free ways to socialize.
In social situations, everybody eats more if they see everybody else doing so. If this sounds familiar, get in the habit of bonding with friends over activities that don't center around food: a walk at the park, an afternoon at a paint-your-own-pottery shop, a long bike ride or hike, or trying a new class at the gym.
To conquer binge eating, keep reading our healthy eating tips, # 4, 5 and 6!