It's easy to be distracted when you're eating — especially when in front of the television — so keeping an eye on your caloric intake can be a bit difficult. With the right kind of planning, however, you can avoid this problem.
Photo by Nicole Gastonguay
My apartment has enough room for a workspace or a dining table, so I chose the workspace. That means eating at my desk or eating in front of the television. A study from John Hopkin's University has found that watching television makes it pretty difficult to accurately estimate your caloric intake, so you could end up overeating if you're distracted. This goes for snacks too, so you have to be careful if you're watching your weight.
Plan Ahead and Wait It Out
One of the easiest ways to solve this problem is to plan ahead. If you portion out what you're going to eat before you sit down, you can't eat more than that without the need to get up and get more. If you're a lazy TV watcher or just interested in the show, chances are you'll wait a little bit before getting back up. Even if you still feel hungry, the feeling of fullness might not kick in for another 10-20 minutes so wait it out before you go to get more.
Snack on Complex Food
If you just like to snack in front of the television, there are a few things that can help. Of course, you can portion out your snack before you sit down, but if you're eating a cupcake or a bowl of popcorn, it's pretty easy to finish eating pretty fast. Healthy snacks are definitely a good substitute when you're on the couch, but picking anything that's more complex or slower to eat will make a difference. It takes me a very long time to get through baby carrots. Nuts still in their shells are excellent too, because the shell removal forces you to eat more slowly. Any food that takes time to eat makes for a better snack in front of the television, as it promotes a naturally slower eating process.