Your grandma may have told you that eating between meals is bad. But what did she know about working in the modern office where circumstances work completely against this principle. Morning meetings, coffee rooms, regular good bye parties are full of overeating opportunities that not all of us handle well.

May be you are one of those people who loves eating donuts and croissants during morning meetings, then another cookie in the coffee room before lunch and why not a mini brownie in the afternoon. After all it keeps your blood sugar high and helps you think faster and clearer. In addition to that, if you keep doing this for several years it will also help you to never see your six pack again. So you will never have to worry about the way you look because the situation will become quite hopeless.

Snacking on popular office carbs and sugars will not only add extra calories[1]  with low nutritional value[2] to your day, but it could also make you hungrier[3], damage your teeth[4] and paradoxically make you more tired[5].

Yes, I know that many companies became more thoughtful when it comes to nutrition and started to buy more fruits, nuts and “healthy” snacks. But next time you grab one of those modern snack bars or nut bags check out the label and see for yourself that the amount of energy it contains is enough to fuel 30min run. And since you will return to your desk it will nourish some of the body parts you wish weren’t too nourished.

Like it or not, but on a regular work day, we the office warriors don’t use that much energy. Sure we do get mentally exhausted and our brains do need an extra punch now and then. However, you will probably do yourself no good if you punch your brain regularly with three 200 calorie snacks a day.

So what is the solution? Should you starve? Should you accept mid-day energy drop? Should you develop military self-control mechanisms?

Well, I’d say 3 times no to that.

How about you try some of the following tricks:

  1. Stop conditional overeating[1]

Meaning that you actually eat not because you are hungry, but because it is there and you just go for it. For example, you could start avoiding places where you know you’ll crack (e.g. afternoon coffee rooms). Or instead of rushing towards a donut you could stop for a second, take a few breaths and check if your body really wants to eat.

  1. Eat proper balanced meals[2]

May be the reason you are snacking is because you are not eating properly during your traditional meals. There is a lot of arguments about what is a balanced meal. l think that Julia Roos’ book The Diet Cure[3] can give you some answers.

  1. Learn how to distract yourself

Next time you will rush towards a tray full of brownies try to distract yourself with something else. Go for a walk, make that call you’ve been putting off, write an email or go to another floor to talk to a colleague. There is a big chance that your urge to snack will pass.

  1. Snack only when you need it

If you are really hungry go for it! After all we don’t want you to fade or feel weak…

  1. Try to go for a healthy option

I know it is hard to resist all those pastries, but if you have a choice to take some fruits, veggies or nuts then you know what to do.

And of course every now and then you should forget all the principles above and just enjoy whatever it is you feel for at the moment. Just be ready for surprises. Once you stop eating all these excess fats and sugars for couple of months, the same old cookie may not taste as good as it did before. This is a true story by the way 🙂

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