How to Control Eating When You're Bored

By Dara Ereshena on September 20, 2012

Food. Sometimes it can be my best friend; sometimes I wish it never existed. I am a pretty healthy person; I exercise daily and watch my portions. I believe everything in moderation. But even after I’ve had a large meal, when 9 o’clock hits, when I watch TV, or when I am just plain bored, all I want to do is eat another meal.

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Now, there is nothing wrong with snacking, but in my case I over-snack causing my wallet to always be empty and my body always feeling slower. The sad thing is I eat because I have nothing else to do. So, over the years, I have developed a couple of tricks to stop myself from eating when it’s simply not necessary.

1. Brush your teeth.  I tend to love snacking late at night when I am about to go to bed and have spent the last few hours not doing homework, but watching TV and browsing the Internet instead. So when I get to that point, I go and brush my teeth. It sounds simple and weird, but trust me it is effective. I am a lazy person, and when I brush my teeth, no matter how hungry I am, I will not go and brush my teeth again. I could literally be in my kitchen and there would be no food worthy enough to make me want to re-do my whole teeth regiment again. Therefore, my laziness proves to sometimes be effective.

2. Drink water slowly. Taking small sips tricks the stomach into believing that you are actually eating and if that doesn’t work, just fill up on water. You can never have enough water.

3. Stay busy. I know what you are thinking, “Um, duh.” If you are always busy, you would not be reading this, but I mean stay busy when you are bored. Even if you are online, you can get bored. Just keep your mind occupied to distract yourself because even when you are sitting there with nothing to do, if your brain is constantly being engaged, you won’t think of eating. Go online shopping, write down all your favorite memories (that will keep you preoccupied for a while), go on time-wasting (but awesome) websites like TheChive.com, TheBerry.com, Reddit.com, Barstool.com, etc. and flood yourself with useless, but interactive information. The key is to keep your mind running so you don’t stop and think, “Hm, nothing is happening right now…FOOD. That would keep me occupied.”

These tips are not much, and it may or may not help you, but in my case, bored eating is one of my biggest problems. Boredom hits everyone, but why let food be the only thing that can possibly entertain you when it does hit?

Mount Holyoke College English Major and Educational Studies Minor, Member of the Varsity Women's Soccer Team, Studied in the Spring 0f 2012 at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.

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