Quarantine Weight Gain
I've gained 10lbs. I'm disabled so I can't get out much. I get really bored and depressed, so I eat. Then of course I get more angry with myself and depressed because I ate. Even though that's what got me to 400+ lbs in the past. I've decided to get a few jigsaw puzzles and paint by numbers sets. Hopefully they will help me not reach for food.
I've managed to maintain (actually, I've lost a couple of pounds), but it hasn't been easy. I'm not a stress eater, but I'm a bored eater, so it's been challenging. I try to get out a lot and walk (for exercise and to keep away from food), but I know you don't have that option. And yes - I know a lot of people are struggling with weight gain through this - a lot of stress AND boredom!
Here are some things that I've found helpful. Lately I've been reading a lot about "intuitive eating". Of course, I don't think that I would ever be able to eat that way; I will need to measure and track for the rest of my life. However, I do think there are some good ideas in there that I can use. One thing I've learned is that it's normal to eat for reasons other than hunger. We eat out of boredom, we eat for comfort, we eat with friends and family for companionship, etc. Wanting to eat for any of those reasons isn't something to feel ashamed of.
I used to try to fight the desire to eat out of boredom, and I felt guilty if I did it. But I've found that, for me at least, it's better to accept that it's a natural desire. So instead, I find healthy ways to satisfy it. One thing that helps me is to have low calorie "fun" food on hand. By "fun", I mean food that has an interesting texture or crunch that makes it fun to eat. I usually have some cherry tomatoes in the kitchen, and I pop one in my mouth whenever I feel the urge to snack. They're so low in calorie that I don't even bother to track them. Carrot sticks, watermelon, pomegranate seeds, things like that. For me, sunflower seeds are also on the list. They are higher in calories, but they taste bitter, so I'm never tempted to eat more than 1/2 teaspoon. Another fun thing to eat, especially during summer, is frozen grapes or blueberries. I put one in my mouth and suck on it until it's half melted; then I eat it.
Similarly, I have a few comfort foods for when I'm sad or stressed, or just feel the desire to treat myself. The main one is a "hot chocolate" that I make with some cocoa, a half-serving of protein powder, and hot chocolate. I add a splash of almond milk to make it even creamier. I find it very soothing. Another comfort food for me is 10g of almond butter with some dates. Now that's higher in calories (~175) but it does provide protein and is one of my few sources of fat in my diet, so it works for me. Also, it's not something I'm tempted to go to far overboard with.
Finally, evenings are when I'm most likely to crave things. So I make sure to save some calories for the end of the day. I try never to deprive myself of food I want. Instead, I tell myself I can have it later.
Great idea. I'm going to start keeping low calorie, low carb snacks ONLY. I bought an individual blender today to start back making protein shakes. I like Muscle Milk + Protein powder + a banana + 1 equal. Yummy, and very filling.
on 6/1/20 3:27 pm
I really like your idea of jigsaw puzzles and painting... every time i try and order a puzzle off amazon, it states it is out of stock =( I will keep trying, though!
on 6/1/20 5:44 pm
Don't get discouraged I am sure we all had the same issues. It was so hard not to just grab food when I was bored. I struggled before the lockdown. I ended up doing jigsaw puzzles on my iPad and also painting. I did do some painting on canvas, but I like the way the others come out much better (I am not creative at all). It really has helped me. I also started watching tiktok videos and that kept my mind off things as well. I don't recommend the tiktok videos. It is like a rabbit hole and you lose your entire day in a matter of minutes. :D
on 6/4/20 11:23 am
I can so relate! That's a great idea to get some puzzles and paint. I am trying to read more and walk more!