Have You Set Your “No Eating Zone”?

Slacking (and snacking) at workOne of the most basic rules for weight loss is “only eat in the kitchen, sitting at the kitchen table”. This limits the amount of food that is consumed between meals or without thinking, because usually snacks are not eaten sitting down at the table. Hundreds of calories can be scarfed down munching on a bag of chips while searching for something in the pantry to make for dinner, or mindlessly popping nuts into your mouth while scanning the newspaper.

Now think about your own eating habits during the day. How much eating do you do outside of the kitchen? Lots of people snack in front of the television. Many people eat in their car. The desk at work is another area that is often used for a quick snack, or even lunch if there’s not enough time to go to a cafeteria. This is the type of eating that’s not usually very conscious. In other words, the eater is not highly aware of the process of eating. It’s difficult to notice the taste of the food, the texture, the enjoyment of the flavor and smell of what you are eating if, at the same time, you are driving, watching TV, or reviewing an invoice at your desk.

The “no eating zone” establishes areas where you realize you are eating mindlessly and takes them off limits for food. If you keep snacks in your car, in your desk, or in your nightstand, take a moment to calculate how many calories per day you are eating while doing something else. That means you aren’t really enjoying the food you’re eating, but you receive all those extra calories anyway! And remember, for every 100 calories you can do without, that’s another pound lost at the end of the month.

So make yourself a little sign that says, “NO EATING ZONE” and place it where it will remind you, this place is off limits for food. Try eating only at the kitchen table or a restaurant/cafeteria for a few weeks and see how much food you are giving up using this technique. Leave us a comment to tell us where you eat and what you eat and how you are doing making this a no eating zone!

photo credit: °Florian

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