It’s 3:30p on Wednesday afternoon and you are sitting at your desk. You are starting to get the post-lunch grumbles in your stomach while watching the clock anticipating the minute you can leave for the day.
We’ve all been there.
Most of us are conditioned to grab a bag of buffalo pretzels from the vending machine or a few handfuls of generic brand candy from the bowl on the front desk or nothing at all. And on our hardest days it usually gets worse, leading to chocolate bars or a frappuccino from Starbucks across the street.
However, none of these snacks actually make us feel good. We usually run off of a sugar high for 30 minutes and then feel sick to our stomachs and resort to fantasizing about our next meal.
BUT it doesn’t have to play out like this, week in and week out.
We are challenging you to set aside an extra hour this week + we promise it will make a huge difference in the way you feel, work, sleep, and view yourself. The name of the game is meal prep. With a little bit of help from the info below you will be set to prepare food for your whole week in a flash. Seriously, get ready to have your life changed.
One thing that is crucial to conquering snacking habits and mindless eating is the difference between emotional and physical hunger. Emotional hunger comes when you’re feeling certain emotions intensely and they tell you you NEED a certain food to be satisfied - this is usually when we justify eating an entire cake or bag of chips.
According to recent studies, a high intake of “junk food” during high stress or on a regular basis actually increases anxiety. We want you to put yourself in the most stress-free, healthy environment as possible. The foods listed here have been said to reduce stress and keep you full - perfect for that after lunch snack!
Green Leafy Vegetables:
These leafy little guys have been found to contain folate which produces dopamine. You’ll be salad smiling for sure. We have found this option is super easy to throw together in the morning & you can create it to be a filling lunch salad or a midday snack! For lunch try spinach, romaine hearts, or arugula (or a mix!) with avocado, almonds, carrots, cucumbers, strawberries and a homemade or low sugar vinaigrette - add fish or grilled chicken if you are wanting a protein! – For a snack just try a small bowl of spinach with sliced strawberries and a vinaigrette.
The antioxidants and phytonutrients in these blue pebbles are said to help your body fight anxiety and stress - who wouldn’t want that aid?! And a bowl of blueberries will usually help curb that hankering sweet tooth. Just pack up a few small sandwich bags full of em’ and you’ll be set for the week!
We are all too familiar with just needing something to do with our hands as we read through a long email or work on a big project. Chips are usually the go-to but not anymore. Pistachios have the perfect shell to crack open again and again, the rhythmic movements will help you lock in + pistachios have heart-health benefits! Same with the blueberries, just a few sandwich bags full and you’re good to go!
This one is for all you sweet junkies who just can’t go without (hey, I get it. I’m one too). Surprisingly, dark chocolate can sometimes help reduce stress hormones. BUT there’s a catch: only a square or two at a time, not a whole bar. So this option requires some self control. Be sure to buy a kind that is low in sugar and has a high % of cocoa on the package! Now on those desperate days when you’re in need of a chocolate fix, you won’t have to feel so guilty!
As previously mentioned, this one is a good add-on to any meal or snack and has been show to make you feel full longer. In turn, you should reach for sweet and salty, unhealthy snacks less often! Add slices of avocado to salad, rice or anything you want. Eat the slices with a little vinaigrette and sliced tomatoes. The possibilities are endless!
These are only a few options, so don’t hesitate to do a little research of your own! ( We started looking here). Choosing to eat healthy and make small steps towards feeling better is a process so don’t get discouraged if it doesn’t always work out - just make the effort! You’ve got this.
We are redefining comfort food and making it something that makes you feel good long term! Your body and your mind will thank you!