Eating when you’re not hungry, or when you’re bored, angry, tired, procrastinating, or celebrating can push your calorie intake way up. The biggest problem is that we often don’t realize that we’re shoving food into our mouths – either because we’re distracted, we don’t want to know, or we just plain old don’t care.
Here are a dozen reasons and triggers for “mindless” eating:
- “Cheap” calories – the kind you find at all you can eat restaurants, those freebie tastes in markets, “value meals,” and three courses for the price of two.
- Bread and extras like butter, olive oil, and olives on the table or peanuts or pretzels at a bar. Way too tempting to pass up – especially if you’re hungry or you’ve walked in with the attitude that you “deserve” it because you’ve had a rotten day.
- Opening your cabinet or refrigerator door and having your favorite snacks staring you in the face.
- Procrastinating or avoiding doing what you have to do by having a snack.
- Family gatherings that serve traditional and/or highly caloric foods that you wouldn’t normally eat – and a whole bunch of angst that causes you to eat.
- Watching TV with a bag of chips or a bowl of candy on your lap.
- Parties and events — especially when you drink — causing you to lose count and control of what you’re grabbing to eat.
- Sitting near a vending machine or the snack room at work – and the candy bowls on a lot of desks.
- Buffets – anywhere and everywhere . Oh, the heaps and piles of good looking food. Enough said.
- Feeling tired, bored, angry, or “out-of-sorts” and looking for food as a “pick-me-up.”
- Having a stressful – or boring –meeting especially when there’s a table full of food nearby.
- Getting home, having no plan for dinner, and just picking and nibbling a ton of calories all evening.
What are your reasons?