Wednesday, 9 May 2018, By Jo Hurst

Everyone has a DANGERTIME where they forget all their healthy eating principles and start munching away mindlessly. For some people it's that afternoon slump, for others it's meal preparation time and for some it's the late night supper snack.

So, what can you do to prevent it? What can you do differently to create new habits?

We surveyed 100 clients and came up with the top 6 answers to the question -

 "What is your danger time for eating the wrong foods?

  1. AFTERNOON TEA - The time of the day when you feel you need an energy boost and there is nothing going to satisfy the sweet tooth craving. It's important to acknowledge the way you feel and find something else to do to distract you. Drink your water, snack on a healthy option - yoghurt and nuts, berries or cheese and crackers are some good choices. If you can, go for a walk and change your mind set. Whatever you do don't go past a vending machine and do NOT stop for petrol. (See top 10 weight loss tips article)
  2. AFTER DINNER - Your food is planned and prepped, loaded into your food diary and you have calculated your macronutrients perfectly and then as you relax after dinner your mind wanders to the kitchen and you open the cupboard to see what would be a healthy choice. Often a few nuts, a protein shake, yoghurt and berries and a cup of tea ends up being a mini meal, you have just sabotaged yourself again. Set your supper into your meal planning or have a cup of tea. Remove yourself from the situation by having a shower or just snuggling up in bed.
  3. MEAL PREPARATION TIME - Walking in from a busy day and preparing the meal can mean for some you eat as much in that time as you would during the meal. Have a hearty afternoon tea to keep you feeling satisfied for longer or just munch on some crunchy green vegies. Enjoy a cup of tea or a lemon and soda water instead of a glass of wine. Make your dinner something delicious so you are looking forward to it and avoid the snack attack.
  4. WEEKEND CHEAT MEAL - We all agree a cheat meal is a good thing and should be enjoyed however a Nutella ball donut milkshake is not really a cheat meal but more a cheat DAY in one serving. It can also be easy to extend your cheat meal into a cheat day/ weekend. When selecting your cheat meal, you don't have to have the worst option on the menu. In fact, a deliciously healthy meal at a nice cafe can give you the same satisfaction. Enjoy your options in moderation and avoid the temptation of grazing or extending your meal.
  5. MORNING TEA - Farewell morning tea or charity feel good cupcake days can be very dangerous for some people. Bring a plate of food you can eat - that way you can eat it. Stand away from the table so you have to move to reach the food. Select the healthy options first, that way you will be satisfied with your choices. If you have to go back for seconds stay away from the fried options and shop bought treats. You are better off to have a small homemade muffin than the huge piece of banana bread or cake made three days ago in the "bakery" of the local supermarket. Eat and leave- if you miss out on something amazing that person will probably make it again and you can try it next time
  6. HOLIDAYS - This is where all bets are off and all the hard work and effort you have put in is left at home and the buffet becomes your best friend. There are plenty of great tips for holiday eating (See Happy Holidays article). Try and stay in your healthy active routine as much as possible and keep your food diary every day. Limit your alcohol and avoid drinking at lunch as it is easy to double your alcohol consumption without even realising. Take note of who you are with during those times and see if they are contributing to your lack of accountability. You can ask them for support to stay on track or get them involved in your goals so you can work together. Limit the time you spend with people who don't share the same nutrition principles as you                                                                

Good luck and remember:  "If it's meant to be, it's up to me"  With your goals at stake it's important to understand what your emotional triggers are, what your routines and habits are that are leading you to the same result. Once you stand back and notice your behaviours they become much easier to change. Set yourself small targets to make it achievable and success will be your friend.

*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.

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