You’ve been good all week – dedicated yourself to daily trips to the gym, carefully chose foods from the “best bites list, and even resisted those leftover doughnuts in the break room. But today was extra stressful and now you’ve got a craving for something sweet…or a lot of something sweet.


We’ve all had slip ups in our eating habits. Hunger, stress, and fatigue can combine to make us forgo healthy eating practices and binge on our favorite treats or overeat during meals when we would normally show more restraint. Here are a few tips I have found to help fight the urge to splurge!


Eat a high fiber/high protein meal


Feeling more full and more alert can help you avoid those extra late night trips to the pantry. High fiber foods like beans, whole grain breads, fruits, and vegetables will make you feel fuller for longer. A diet rich in lean proteins can also signal your brain that you’re not hungry. Choose foods from the “best bites” list so that a growling stomach doesn’t send you looking for snacks later on.


Identify trigger foods and remove them from your pantry


You know when you can’t have “just one bite” of a particular food. “Trigger foods” are the ones that you just can’t seem to stop eating with 1 serving. Don’t sabotage yourself by stocking these in your home! If you’ve got to have them at home, try pre-portioning them into single serving bags. That way, you know when you’ve had a serving and can better prevent yourself from continuing to stick your hand into the big bag of potato chips.


Write down everything – keep yourself honest


Keeping a food diary is the secret to success for many people working on their fitness. By writing down everything you eat, you’ll have a better idea of why you are or are not achieving the fitness goals you set. Further, knowing you’ll have to write it down later can serve as a psychological barrier to bingeing on treats. After all, who wants to own up to eating 3 giant candy bars? So remember – if you bite it, write it!


Pack healthy snacks to avoid hunger


When our stomach is growling it’s harder to make the healthy choices we should. Cooking healthy usually takes more time than grabbing something tasty from a drive through. Make sure you have a healthy treat on hand to curb hunger pangs until you have the time to make the healthy choice. High fiber and high-protein treats (like some granola bars) are a good bet!


Rethink “binges”


Ate a little too much at lunch today? Snacked more than you meant to? It’s okay – give yourself a break! Don’t stress about the little extras that creep into your diet from time to time – they are unavoidable. Most importantly, reframe how you think about them. Just because you ate a little extra doesn’t mean “the day is wasted.” When we use this line of thinking, it often provides us with the rationale to keep eating poorly while we promise ourselves we’ll get back on track on Monday. Avoid this all-or-nothing thinking to prevent a little splurge from turning into a big binge!