I don’t know about you, but I tend to snack a lot. When I’m bored, sad, happy, but most of all, when I’m not actually hungry. It was a problem for me before quarantine and now, over a year later, it’s something I still struggle with every day. This might not be an issue if the snacks I chose were healthy, but even then, over snacking is never ideal.  

A healthy diet is incredibly important, as studies show it can help prevent diseases, affect mental health, promote weight loss and encourage a healthier relationship with food. Acknowledging the importance of healthy eating is the easy part, but the actual implementation of it tends to be a lot more difficult. So, what can you do to make eating healthy from home easier?

1. Don’t work near the kitchen. While working near (or even in) the kitchen might be unavoidable, if you can, try to work far away from it. By working further away from it, you can decrease the possible temptation of unnecessary snacking throughout the day.

2. Have Healthy Snacks. Get rid of snacks that you know you can’t resist. If there is something you keep in home for your partner or kids, try labeling it so you can have a visual reminder not to eat it or try to find a healthier alternative of the snack for yourself.

3. Meal Prep. Even if you’re not going anywhere, meal prepping breakfast and lunches can help prevent the quick, last-minute grab for food between meetings or when you’re not sure what to eat. It’s also important to try to eat these meals away from your laptop, if you are able, and at a scheduled time. This might not be feasible all of the time, but keeping up a routine could lessen the chance of snacking and mindless eating throughout the day.

4. Focus on Why You’re Eating. As mentioned before, I tend to snack for all type of reasons, but I’m not usually hungry when I do so. Take a mental note and ask yourself if you’re actually hungry or just need a break from work. If you’re still not sure, try drinking some water because you might be dehydrated instead.

5. Eat Real Meals. If you are super busy throughout the day, it might be tempting to eat something quick and easy. The problem is this usually ends up not being as filling and you might find yourself in the kitchen again only a few hours later. Instead try eating a well-balanced and nutrient dense meal (hello, meal prep), that will keep you satiated for longer periods of time.

Healthy eating is harder said than done, but you’ll find the benefits outweigh effort it may take. It’s also good to remember it may take time to get into a routine of healthy eating, so patience is important. Finally, it’s okay to make mistakes and if you end up eating a candy bar, it’s not a big deal-just try your best and have fun with it!

Guest Blogger: Mollie Clupper, Public Ally

Mollie Clupper is working as a Public Ally AmeriCorps Apprentice for MHA. Using her own experiences, she wants to help bring awareness and end the stigma surrounding mental health. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, drinking coffee, and spending time with her fur-niece.