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How to deal with workplace junk food?



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NYPOPS
Posts: 163
7/9/10 12:36 A

imagine this, i work in a BAKERY! it is CRAZYY, the only way i can deal with not eating cookies and pastries and even the fresh baked bread is to take my own snacks and have them in plain site. i have to keep them out on the tables where i am working so i know if im going to have a snack it has to be my own.



DWPHILL
Posts: 1,409
7/8/10 11:10 P

I just stay away from it....



MISSRSENIC
Posts: 26
7/8/10 10:55 P

The best advice I have heard is to only eat what you bring to work, and nothing else. Pretty good idea, I need to follow this more closely myself.

Something that works good for me is when there are treats brought in I decide if it's something I really want, if it is I allow myself a little tiny bit, or I wait until later on (like after lunch) and if there are still treats hanging out THEN I allow myself some. Usually by then it doesn't really look that great, and even better when everyone else has had there share and there is nothing left.

I also try and keep a variety of snacks at work, sweet stuff like fat free yogurt,and applesauce. Salty/crunchy stuff like popcorn,low fat crackers and or nuts. And warm soothing/comfort foods like oatmeal, and tea. One of those usually satisfies any craving I am having!

Edited by: MISSRSENIC at: 7/8/2010 (22:57)


CHASE_URDREAMS
Posts: 605
7/8/10 10:22 P

Baby Carrots! 35 calories per 3.3 oz (about 8 medium). We have candy machine and a soda machine down the hall from my desk and it's so tempting. So I go to the fridge and grab my bag of baby carrots that I keep there and eat some of those. They cure the snack craving without undoing my whole day.



JOYOUS111
SparkPoints: (31,426)
Fitness Minutes: (27,038)
Posts: 1,742
7/8/10 10:08 P

truely, my hardest thing. sometimes I just snub my nose to me..as if it is beneath me to even smell it.

Edited by: JOYOUS111 at: 7/8/2010 (22:09)


SLIMSOLO10
Posts: 255
7/8/10 9:26 P

We very often have lunches brought in by companies for us and I have a hard time resisting these because I am such a "Tight-wad". I think I am trying to save money.
I have really been trying to only take what I am able to know the nutrition content on so I can track it and thin I will allow myself 3 bites of the dessert. that is usually satisfying enough to me that I don't feel so cheated. My goal is to eventually not even need that.



FORTKATE
SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (4,751)
Posts: 192
7/8/10 9:26 P

I don't bring change/dollar bills into the workplace. Therefore, I'm not able to buy anything out of the vending machines.



NIXIE_DUST
Posts: 153
7/8/10 9:07 P

I take pride when someone says "Oh you're not eating this [office treat]? You have such will power!" And then I smile, and THEN it makes me more accountable. And then I smile again, because every time I feel hungry or tempted, I know that that's just what weight loss feels like. Weight loss feels like hunger, because hunger is fat leaving the body.



SANDRAMARIA
SparkPoints: (11,267)
Fitness Minutes: (9,435)
Posts: 329
7/8/10 8:52 P

Where I work someone is always bringing in some goody.
I find it easy to just walk away from it if I have had a good breakfast.



DISIZIT
Posts: 147
7/8/10 8:50 P

thankfully there isn't a snack machine and no office parties to entice any temptations.....i do bring a healthy lunch, so that's key in keeping in step w/ my goals.



PIGGSY1
Posts: 77
7/8/10 8:47 P

Until 8 weeks ago, I never packed a lunch. Now, I pack a lunch and snacks religiously. And, I don't go near the snack or drink machine. There is nothing there that I want or need. This has not only benefited my weight loss, but also my bank account.



TRIXEL
Posts: 343
7/8/10 8:45 P

My workplace has free chips and soda. I just pretty much pretend they don't exist. I know as soon as I start eating a bag of chips, (at least at this point)all bets will be off. :P



HEALTHNUT2009
Posts: 901
7/8/10 8:39 P

well i been bringing a bag of mini carrots and celery and i try to stay out of the lunch room where the machine is that has the "temptation" although I like to say - i only eat those dill pickle baked lays now 1 or 2 times in 5 day week.. i was buying them every day !! .. and I only drink a diet or usually a zero coke .. maybe 2 times a week .. if at all - I KNOW water is better but .. you know sometimes u just wanna have what u wanna have.. as long as I am aware of what it is .. and how many ...
its all about control i know this... everyone knows this.. - yet u know sometimes u just gotta give into those little voices.. of "mmm that sounds good" LOL



CURVESDIVA2000
Posts: 142
7/8/10 8:27 P

if i dont see it i dont want it. but the moment i see junk my mouth waters and i am "hungry". so i try not to go into the break room or hide the junk~



KAYLAP101
Posts: 55
7/8/10 8:26 P

The majority of food in my lunch bag is small snacks, I get bored easily at work and find myself needing to munch so I keep healthy food close by and then I am not tempted to eat bad at work.
Its easy for me to eat good at work mainly because alot of ppl are doing a "biggest loser" comp at work with me. That helps alot!



MBG976
Posts: 338
7/8/10 8:03 P

I get lunch for free at my job, but I choose to bring my lunch 95% of the time. Even though my company provides a free lunch, it is not the healthiest choices at all. Over the years, many of my fellow co-workers have gained quite a bit of weight by eating the food. That is enough incentive for me to continue bringing my lunch.



BROWNIEISLANDER
Posts: 3,049
7/8/10 8:01 P

I just look at the Junk..and look off!! If its nothing i want...i ignore it. Most of the time......
I take my lunch with me.. emoticon



BEINGALLIE
Posts: 129
7/8/10 7:15 P

Ok! So my work takes me to an infamous coffee store where we sell pastry, sandwiches (breakfast & lunch), cookies, brownies, rice crispy treats and so on to go with the latte, frozen drinks and more!!!! Surrounded! Things break and most everyone picks on them, I used to as well ... but over a year ago I said no more and I actually don't. If I really want it I buy it and include it in my day. I bring food to work with me too. It took a lot of will power to break that pattern but I can honestly say it's gone. I just kept saying no to myself and got partners to stop offering things to me. Be diligentknow you're worth more than that snacky thing!



EFELL123
SparkPoints: (5,520)
Fitness Minutes: (2,038)
Posts: 192
7/8/10 7:11 P

Consider how to add some healthy choices to the junk food, i.e. almonds, fresh fruit, etc. This will give you an alternative to the junk food.

The other thing is to decide if you really want it. If you do, try to eat it in moderation and account for it in your daily calorie intake.



10ALLIE05
Posts: 32
7/8/10 7:09 P

My problem is going out to eat with coworkers. Today I had packed a healthy lunch and when I was first asked by my coworkers to go out I said no. They made me feel like a party pooper so I ended up going with them to the local burger place. :(



WHEELS54
Posts: 492
7/8/10 6:35 P

I work in a research facility that has frequent journal clubs. We have a lot of vendor shows too. There is usually food around. I say "Uh-oh, donuts" and keep walking. Fresh bagels are more tempting to me so if I must have one, I track it. It helps not to let myself get too hungry so I try to have something I like to snack on in my office.



JADEPHOENIX4
Posts: 18
7/8/10 6:34 P

We always have junk food in our lunchroom, we have a pop and food vending machines. I simply don't keep any change in my wallet, and i also sit with my back facing the machines. see no evil chips eat no evil chips. sometimes we get a staff treat with donuts and such, i just avoid them and eat my own fruit and veggies.



TREKJUNKIE
SparkPoints: (7,184)
Fitness Minutes: (3,495)
Posts: 288
7/8/10 6:31 P

Unfortunately I just can't eat any of it. If I start, I will finish the entire plate. One time a co-worker brought in 2 dozen donut holes and throughout the day I ate the entire bowl. Not one person ate any besides me. I just kept walking buy and grabbing a few here and there.
So, I have talked to my co-workers and explained how difficult it is for me and I have asked them to bring in just enough for everyone so that it gets eaten and I am not sitting here staring at it. My cubicle is right by the breakroom. Since then, some of them have brought in fruit and veggies with hummus. Come to find out, they all want to eat better also but did not think anyone would eat the healthy stuff.

Edited by: TREKJUNKIE at: 7/8/2010 (18:33)


FLOWEREDANGEL
Posts: 207
7/8/10 6:16 P

This week has been AWFUL for treats at work.

Tuesday was donuts, Wednesday was ice cream cake, today was donuts again...

I have entered all of these in my tracker, but I've been high on my range of calories all week and while I've enjoyed the treats I could have eaten a lot better stuff that would have satisfied me more.

I lasted all day with the donuts today, but finally at 3, half an hour before I was done I caved because I was feeling nibbly.

I really can't complain because I make them fit, but I would have enjoyed a big plate of watermelon in the evening more I'm sure.

The hard part is most of the people in my office seem to be at a healthy weight, it's just me really that has the weight issue. They all know I'm working on it and have obviously seen the changes and progress...and honestly, they don't bring in junk every week now like it used to be, which I'm grateful for...but this week was just bad all around.

So I don't really have any advice for this...I just struggle through and if I eat something, I fit it in.

Edited by: FLOWEREDANGEL at: 7/8/2010 (18:21)


FOCUSEDDIANE
Posts: 851
7/8/10 6:10 P

I cover my eyes (in very dramatic fashion) and act like it's not there. (all the time saying "no, no, no....")



FORESTGHOUL
Posts: 548
7/8/10 6:07 P

bring your own healthy stuff. if you want those m&m's get some trail mix that has them in it. it's not the "healthiest" but it's better than having just a package of m&M's and you get a little nutrition. if someone is offering you something, take 1 or a couple, say thanks and walk away or take it and save it for a later day. if you can't stop yourself, budget it into your calories for the day. you can't deny things, but maybe allow for treats on occasion - say once a week or 1 small thing a day.
I bring my own food always. this keeps me out of the vending machines. i work in a cleanroom so no one has food at their desk. as for the breakroom, i eat by myself so i'm never tempted by what anyone else has. if someone brings a pan of brownies or cookies i take one and save it for the next day, unless it's not too bad and i can swap it out for something i brought. but generally i keep my work days healthy and planned out with 1 small indulgence included and relax a little more on days off.



JESPAH
Posts: 12,180
7/8/10 5:55 P

Actually, this is one of my easier ones (yeah ...).

I am a semi-vegetarian and don't eat beef or pork. Hence I just say that whatever it is, it's made with beef or lard. Beef cookies. Lard chips. So I pass it by.

Hence if there's a food you truly hate, you might want to try something like that. Asparagus and brussels sprouts cake, anyone?



NWEITE
SparkPoints: (5,723)
Fitness Minutes: (7,632)
Posts: 238
7/8/10 5:50 P

I did great on this today. I saw the doughnuts and walked right by and grabbed my light yogurt.

Then when I walked by again later, there were bagels! So I found a coworker to split one with and had it for lunch.
emoticon



KGEBERT
Posts: 136
7/8/10 5:29 P

thankfully after starting spark i was able to spread the spark! here at work most of the coworkers i see have joined sparkpeople. we all bring in fruit or veggies and share with everyone. if a patient would give us a bunch of candy i usually put it in the cupboard. out of sight out of mind! this usually works for me.

if i were you i would express to your co-workers that you are trying to stay away from that junk. tell them that you appreciate the thought of it but are unable to consume those types of food anymore. tell them that fruits and veggies are your snack of choice. then i would bring in some veggies and hummus or some fruit with a yogurt dip. and once you start bringing that in maybe they will also change their ways.




TSANDE13
Posts: 81
7/8/10 5:28 P

I have the same problems because I work nights we often have potlucks and snacks. You end up mindlessly eating. My solution is to eat good food from home every few hours to keep myself ever getting hungry, that way I am not tempted



COPPERHEAD71
Posts: 39
7/8/10 4:38 P

I had this same issue when I first started my journey back in January. My goal that first week was to stay away from the candy bowl in our office -- and then on the very first day on the way back to my desk I passed by the bowl and without even thinking grabbed a little bag of m&ms and downed them. And if you're going to have 1 you might as well have another, right? Argh! I was so mad at myself for blowing it! So I came in the next morning with renewed determination and the first thing I did was bring together the others in my office. I told them very frankly about the journey I was undertaking to change -- and save -- my life. I then told them about blowing that goal and how that made me feel. I told them that for me working next to this candy all day long is like an alchoholic working at an open bar -- I simply can't do it. I asked them to please move the candy to another area of the building where I wouldn't be faced with temptation all day long. They were very understanding and supportive, they moved the candy immediately, and I haven't had any problems since. So I guess my advice is to be open and honest about the difficulty you're having. Don't seek to curb the behavior altogether, but see if you can find an alternative that will work for everyone, like putting it in another location. I think you will be surprised at how supportive and encouraging everyone will be.



ALEXISMM
Posts: 157
7/8/10 3:22 P

Maybe you could counteract the junk your boss brings in for everybody with a big bowl of fresh fruit for everybody. Or veggies and hummus? You probably aren't the only one that doesn't want to eat all that junk.

Maybe your boss will get the hint that folks would rather have healthy snacks.



CCFIRECRACKER
Posts: 2,030
7/8/10 1:30 P

i surround myself with motivational notes. my computer wallpaper at work says "perseverance, strength, drive, willpower, determination, results" in black letters on a hot pink background. i see it everytime i close the windows i'm working in. i also have post-it on the back of my cell that says "no mindless eating" and i have a notepad on my desk with my goals, my max calories and phrases like "get serious" and "just do it", which i look at throughout the day to remind myself.

also, if treats are around, i tell myself (repeatedly) that i can't just have one treat or it will undo me and i'll continue down that slippery junk-food slope. junk foods are a MAJOR trigger for me so avoidance is my best bet.

most of the time all these little things actually work for me. i hope you find the answers you need here. good luck!!!! emoticon



MOTIVATEDMOMMY
Posts: 609
7/8/10 1:16 P

So many GREAT tips! Thanks everyone!
I have been really good so far today. With the exception of 2 mini pretzel sticks (which aren't too bad as a snack), I have had only fruit I brought from home as a snack. And I feel much happier and more satisfied than I do normally.

It has helped me immensely to come on here and read your responses! :)



KATHLEEN0222
SparkPoints: (35,440)
Fitness Minutes: (29,099)
Posts: 680
7/8/10 1:06 P

I just stop and think of all of the hands/fingers could have touched the goodies being offered and that's enough to stop me from partaking. Besides, it would have to be something pretty spectacular to get me to give in... not the usual bagels or store bought cookies.



ML42273
Posts: 40
7/8/10 1:05 P

Unless it's something with gluten in it I'll try a bite size piece just to taste it, and remind my self that I want to taste, not gorge. It also helps to think how I'll feel later if i eat too much, bloated and sick.



JOANIENOEL
SparkPoints: (41,538)
Fitness Minutes: (21,090)
Posts: 2,410
7/8/10 1:03 P

I don't know why, but I've always had control over not eating workplace junk food, even if I've had no control in any other area of my eating. It's similar to my lack of interest in vending machine food. I can count on two hands the number of times I've purchased from a vending machine in my entire life. I think I just view workplace and vending machine junk food as nothing but "processed" which reads to me as "DON'T TOUCH! HEALTH HAZARD!" and I pass it by 99% of the time.

On the days when I am slightly tempted to indulge, I just tell myself to wait a few more minutes, and then a few more minutes on top of that. Usually the office food is gone within the first hour of sitting around. So if you wait it out, the temptation will likely be gone soon! :)



GRIZ1GIRL
SparkPoints: (126,894)
Fitness Minutes: (157,558)
Posts: 2,240
7/8/10 12:55 P

Simple...DON'T EAT IT. I view workplace goodies as POISON. (Just don't tell you co-workers that, or they'll think you're a nutball!)

I found once I stopped eating office goodies I not only lost weight, but I was healthier overall. Who knows what kind of germs & bad food hygiene your co-workers use preparing stuff?

Offer to bring fruits & veggies to the office parties--then stick with YOUR OWN SNACKS...and ONLY your own snacks!



BLYNN710
Posts: 292
7/8/10 12:52 P

I try to keep healthy snacks in my office so that I have something to eat to distract me from the not so healthy fare brought in. However, if it is something I know about ahead of time, like a birthday or whatnot, then I plan accordingly so that I don't look like I am alienating myself from the rest of the office.



EIDOTHEA1
SparkPoints: (23,754)
Fitness Minutes: (12,318)
Posts: 1,539
7/8/10 12:44 P

Do you have someone that you work with that is struggling with the same issue? If you have support and someone there to "talk you down" it would help. I'm lucky that I have 2 friends that I work with who are on the same journey. Whenever one of us is tempted, the other says "Tastes like dirt" and convinces the tempted to walk away.



RUTHIE254
Posts: 262
7/8/10 12:35 P

My rule is: I can eat ANYTHING that I want, as long as I know how many calories it is, and I write it down (or enter it in the Nutrition Tracker). If I want to include a treat in my calorie budget for the day, I can -- that's my choice -- BUT, I've found that I don't like to "waste" my calories on "treats." On Tuesday of this week (day after the July 5th holiday) there was a plate of chocolate brownies in the lunchroom, probably left over from somebody's picnic. Looked yummy -- but probably at least 200 calories! Not worth it!!! I feel too good about how I feel (physically & emotionally) and about how good I look this summer (finally!) to screw it up. Nothing tastes as good as fit feels. I've decided that I want to be that skinny woman at work who doesn't eat that junk.



WILDKITTY13
Posts: 1,289
7/8/10 12:29 P

Like someone else said, try giving things away to someone else, or if they're still reasonably healthy but you have too much or they don't fit your particular nutrition plan, pack them in your kids's lunches.
Definitely bring your own snacks from home. If you're not hungry, or just snacked on something healthy, you'll be much less likely to indulge. Find something that's satifying but still healthy (e.g. granola bars that have chocolate but are more filling than a brownie/cookie anyway, plus have other nutritional values).
When you're tempted, just think about your personal goals, and if it's worth compromising those for that moment of weakness. If you're the type of person who can try a taste without going overboard, allow yourself to do so, but only occassionally! Even tastes can add up!
Also, if it's appropriate, try mentioning your fitness goals to whomever is offering you treats. Vendors will bring lunch to my office sometimes, so I just ask that they make it something healthy (otherwise, I fear greasy pizza!!). I've actually discovered a few fun and healthy restaurants this way that I otherwise wouldn't have known about! Remind your coworkers that you appreciate their thoughtfulness and the gesture, but you are trying hard to make changes towards a healthy lifestyle for yourself.
Best of luck! :)



CORTNEY-LEE
SparkPoints: (51,931)
Fitness Minutes: (45,529)
Posts: 3,061
7/8/10 12:16 P

I totally feel your pain! Every weekend my Boss brings us McDonald's breakfast. Then chips (my weakness) and since I work for a trucking company, my drivers are always bringing me stuff too! Last weekend one of them brought me 2 packages of double stuff oreos! I am also trying very hard to stay away from these snacks, but I agree it is tempting, especially for me because I just stared my journey about 1 1/2 months ago.

Also my job is mucho stressful, and I am a total stress eater. A lot of the times instead of delving into the potato chip bag, I will go and make myself a cup of hot tea. Something about a hot drink helps distract me. I also try to keep good stuff with me to munch on. I love those Fiber One bars - they are sweet and not to bad as far as calories and fat are concerned. I have also started taking my own breakfast to work instead of eating at the house before I leave. That way I have something to eat while the others are eating and that helps.

I guess we need to keep reminding ourselves why we are doing this, and as another poster said, "nothing tastes as good as being healthy/ reaching your goals feels"



DOINGTHIS
Posts: 420
7/8/10 12:09 P

Tracking is helpful.

But for me, what really works is telling myself I can have one piece if I'm actually hungry in one hour. If I'm actually hungry an hour later, I'll eat one piece and say, if I'm hungry in an hour, I'll have another. But it's really important to identify the difference between hunger and craving cues. (Obviously, make sure you have eaten lunch or breakfast. Then make the 1 hour deal.) Luckily, they are at the end of the hall, so more than a few steps for me.

To me, if I'm hungry and have a craving, it's better for me to eat a small portion of the item than something else. Otherwise I'll just continue to eat until I've consumed those calories, plus more, and then I'll give in and eat the item.

Also, what works for me, if they are in 'large' packages (like a two pack of peanut butter cups). Take one cup and then throw the other one away. It's better to throw the food in the trash than to trash up your body with the extra calories.



LYNN11358
Posts: 12
7/8/10 10:28 A

The Nutrition Tracker has helped me immensely by reminding me of the damamge just a few treats can do. Food has different meaning now when I can weigh the consequences.

I have the same type of office -- someone is always bringing in donuts, going for afternoon cookie runs, impromptu ice cream cake parties... Then I looked around and realized that half of my office mates are obese. A guy who started last year has put on noticeable pounds since he was hired. Do I want to go that route? So, I keep almonds/healthy snacks in my desk, make sure I'm drinking plenty of fluids to stay full, and at the last impromptu cake "meeting", I brought my fat free chocolate pudding with me so I felt like I had a treat. I got a few petty comments, but I knew deep down THEY knew I was doing the right thing.

Like they say, nothing tastes as good as being healthy/reaching your goal feels.



ANIKASTARMARIE
Posts: 68
7/8/10 10:15 A

My work always had junk too. I would try to not eat the junk, but it was difficult, so I started bringing my own snacks to work...you could even try to change the direction of snacking at work and bring something healthy to share.



FEDGIRL4
Posts: 1,899
7/8/10 9:51 A

I had struggled with this also.

The first thing I gave up was going to the vending machine (except for water).

The next thing I gave up was eating what folks bring in. If someone gave me a candy gift, I would give it to my husband to share with his employees and/or customers.

The next thing I gave up was indulging at office get togethers.

After being on the Spark plan, I can easily say that I no longer can eat high fat things. Now I just need to lay off the empty calories, like beer.



BETHANYBOO
Posts: 1,998
7/8/10 9:40 A

I have struggled with this for a long time and I've finally gotten it under control. You're right, the best way to avoid mindless snacking is to completely avoid it altogether. If I have a single munchkin, I'll end up binging.



MASTEREDHEL
Posts: 477
7/8/10 9:40 A

Maybe you could bring your own healthier snacks: apples, almonds, etc.

Or, if you would like to indulge, put the (small) snack in your nutrition tracker *before* you leave for work. Allow yourself what you allotted and stop there. If you're still having a hard time stopping, then just avoid them altogether. Do whatever works.



MOTIVATEDMOMMY
Posts: 609
7/8/10 9:02 A

Hi everyone!
One thing I'm really struggling with now is workplace snacking. I know that snacking can be good for you, but the problem here is that my boss brings in all these junk food/can't-have-just-one type snacks for us... for example M&Ms, cashews, chips, mini-tootsie pops, mini reese cups, and cookies (all within steps of my desk). I end up blowing my calorie budget on them through mindless snacking. I'm wondering if it's better just not to eat them at all if I can help it?

How do you deal with workplace junk food?

Edited by: MOTIVATEDMOMMY at: 7/20/2010 (09:53)


 
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