Mindful eating has become popular during lockdown to curb snacking when working from home.
In fact a recent study of 2000 brits, by Health and wellbeing brand, LivLife, has revealed almost a third (32%) of British millennials tried mindful eating – the practice of observing the food you eat – during and after the lockdown.
This is in stark contrast to the quarter of Gen Zers (16-24-year olds) who didn’t know what mindful eating was but would try it after being given an explanation of the practice. We also found that over 1 in 4 (26%) of females (25-44) tried mindful eating during lockdown.
It uncovered that just under 1 in 5 (19%) are eating more healthily because they are less active and in a bid to curb repeated trips to the fridge, with a third (33%) admitting they are snacking more as they are at home.
Nutritionist at LivLife Vicky Hughes warns that it will be easy to forget these good habits as normal, chaotic life resumes so has created some handy tips for mindful eating as lockdown eases:
1. Notice old habits
As ‘normal’ life resumes, so will old habits. Keep a food diary observing how you are feeling and you’ll notice when you’re genuinely hungry and also what foods make you feel good! You could also make new habits; if you didn’t regularly have breakfast in pre-lockdown life, start a new routine of avocado on toast and maybe it’ll become a new healthy habit.
2. Seated snacking
Research shows that those who practice mindful eating will eat smaller portions and make healthier choices. Try making sure that you take a seat to eat, even a snack, and pay attention to enjoying your food rather than being distracted by the television or your laptop.
3. Be prepared
As you start to leave home more often to go to the office or picnic in the park, resist the temptation to grab a disappointing wrap and crisps from the shop and prepare a small picnic that you will enjoy. Make sure it is high in protein so you aren’t tempted to snack on empty calories later.
4. Shop mindfully
Not being able to eat what we want, when we wanted has helped us to plan our meals for the week. Keep up the good habit by setting aside a little time each week to write a shopping list that will ensure your trolley is full of healthy nourishing food and not sugary impulse purchases. Aim for healthy carbs with lots of colour from vegetables, proteins to keep you fuller for longer and good fats from nuts and seeds.
5. Schedule lunch
Make a big deal out of lunchtime! As many of us return to our office desks, the inclination to grab a coffee for breakfast or packet of crisps for lunch and work at our desk will resume. Plan a beautiful open sandwich packed with colour and eat it away from your desk at roughly the same time every day. This will help you get back into a routine and keep your blood sugar roller-coaster from going off the tracks towards the snacks.