Mindless munching can contribute nearly double the amount of calories a person needs throughout the day. To discover if you mindlessly munch, ask yourself the following questions.
Do I eat a piece or two of candy from the office candy dish as I pass by? FYI, 1 peppermint has 20 calories. If you only eat one a day for five days that's 100 additional calories a week that you may not consider in your eating plan.
Do I eat something while trying to decide what to eat for a meal? You will recognize this habit if you go to the pantry, grab a handful of crackers or chips to eat while you are looking for what to make for a meal. Without thinking you probably just consumed 150 calories in crackers or chips that you didn't count in your calorie allotment.
Do I "sample" eat as I cook? While small tastes for seasoning balance is not a bad thing, mindlessly eating pieces of the separate ingredients or taking spoonfuls before the dish is served can really add up. Some people will consume as many calories before the meal as they would actually from their plate. Essentially the cook just consumed the calories of two meals.
Do I finish my child's meal? Children are usually pretty good at determining the right amount to eat and then leaving some on their plate when they are satisfied (a good habit we all should employ). But when you see the food "going to waste" you consume the rest yourself without considering these last few bites in your meal plan.
Do I eat as I clean up the kitchen? Those extra spoonfuls as you store leftovers in the refrigerator can really add up.
Do I eat foods straight from the original packaging? This habit really takes the calorie consumption into overdrive. When you eat from the bag, box or can that you purchased the food you have no idea how many servings are actually eaten. This habit usually leads to finishing the whole box and consuming nearly a days worth of calories at one time.
Do I eat samples when out shopping? Nothing wrong with trying something new, but munching as you shop can add up to 300-400 additional calories depending on what is offered to taste, how big the samples are and how many you take to try.
Do you "sliver" or take several small amounts of foods and never really consider it a portion? The old adage "If you don't eat it on a plate the calories don't count" is really a big joke. Every bite no matter how small contains calories that add up to your daily total.
Remember, planning meals and snacks in proper portions is a very healthy way to eat. But, if you answered "yes" to any of these questions, you are consuming many more calories than you are admitting. These are just a few questions to get you started on the road to discovery and awareness of your eating habits. Awareness is the first step to change. When you are aware and acknowledge what is true you can make progress toward your goals.
These questions really gave me a reality check, and so now then I am keeping my notebook in my kitchen and every bite will be written down...
Have a great week,
Hugs and Prayers,