HYDERABAD: THE habit of binge eating seems innocent when you’re just reaching out for a few biscuits or chips instead of an entire packet while you are at the computer or watching your favourite series. However, we often tend to overlook this habit and treat it as a needed ‘munchie’ in the middle of the day or in between lunch and dinner mealtimes; binge eating is commonly defined as consuming processed, high caloric foods like chips and cookies, aerated drinks, fried foods etc. between regular main meals, says Sheryl Salis, nutritionist. The lockdown situation has prompted people to adopt the binge eating or snacking culture.
As adolescents and young adults spend long hours working from home, the urge to nibble on edibles throughout the day is the sheer result of hunger or simply boredom; the dull, gloomy monsoon weather only adds to those cravings. However, if you’re smart about your snacking options you are likely to feel less guilty about it! Often, these foods make you feel lethargic, bloated or cause indigestion and possibly even leading to weight gain. The first step is to smart shop and stock up on food that has more nutritional content and promotes gut health. The urge to keep eating small quantities can be controlled by opting for meals that are high in protein, fibre and nutritionally dense with healthy fats.
A wholesome and healthy breakfast will help you get through the first half of the day and ensure you are able to concentrate better instead of snacking right from the start; include dairy products, fruits and protein for a power packed start to the day. Here are a few other quick tips to change your habits of unhealthy snacking
***With the on-going monsoon season, cravings for fried food are at its peak.
*** Instead opt for a bowl of boiled corn by adding chili powder, lemon and some salt along with a cup of ginger tea. Corn is a rich source of soluble and insoluble fibre while ginger has powerful anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties; it is also a superfood that helps build immunity
*** Keep a jar of nuts on your table and snack on a handful of almonds, pistachios and walnuts. Keep the amount in check as nuts are a dense source of calories.
***On days when cooking a wholesome meal is tedious, whip up a smoothie bowl or glass with some fresh fruits and toppings of your choice. A smoothie is not only a temporary meal replacement but also a healthy drink to beat the humid weather. Top your smoothie with two spoons of cold-pressed virgin coconut oil. Virgin coconut oil is an immune-boosting superfood, with other health benefits like weight management and an energy booster.
*** Have protein-rich snacks such as roasted makhana, roasted or boiled chana or mo o n g ch a at wi t h vegetables. There are a lot of easy to make salad bowls which include fresh lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, boiled sweet corn, mushrooms or boiled chicken; topping it off with virgin coconut oil is a healthy option and adds a ton of flavour. Try sugar free protein bars or homemade wraps with a vegan coconut spread.