The outbreak of coronavirus has forced us to remain inside our homes. As a result of the bare minimum physical activities, most of us have started gaining some weight. Our lazy routine and the habit of munching on anything and everything within reach is worsening the situation.
The lockdown has led to ‘stress eating’, which is nothing but overeating. As we have been socially distanced from our support network, food has turned out to be a friend we can always rely on. The effect of this friendship is clearly visible.
If you don’t want to step out all fat and chubby post-quarantine, you better start doing something right now. Here are a few quick tips that will help you keep your weight under control during the lockdown:
Plan your meals
Every morning when you get up, start planning and prepping your meals for the whole day. If possible, write them down. This will help you avoid eating unhealthy things.
Though most people decide to take in only healthy items, as soon as hunger strikes, they are unable to control themselves. They start eating anything they can lay their hands on; overeating in the process.
It would be better if you eat sufficiently so that you are not hungry every 30 minutes. Also, keep some healthy snacks ready in case hunger strikes.
Your bedroom shouldn’t look like it’s your dining room
One of the biggest mistakes people make is to carry food into their bedroom. If you keep food in your bedroom, there is no chance you won’t snack on it. Binge-eating while binge-watching in the comfortable bedroom won’t help you lose weight.
Make it a point to get out of the bed every time you feel like eating something; at least your laziness can help you eat less.
Keep your body hydrated
In this sultry weather, keeping your body hydrated is crucial. Water and other fluids not just ensure good health, but also help in keeping you full. Start drinking more water and you will see your tendency of leisurely munching will reduce.
So, kick-start your day with one litre of water. And make a point to finish 3–4 bottles of water by evening. You can even add some mint leaves or lime and Himalayan salt to one bottle.
Practise slow eating
As we are under lockdown, we have an abundance of time for all activities. You don’t have to wolf down your breakfast to reach the office on time.
Have a long peaceful meal and enjoy your food. Did you know that if you chew your food properly and eat slowly, you tend to eat less? Isn’t this worth trying? Now that you have time, make a point to explore this fact during the quarantine.
Follow a strict routine
This might be difficult at first, but gradually you will start finding your day more productive. Form a proper schedule with exact meal timings, try not to slip out of the routine.
You will find that this optimal eating routine will also keep the lethargic feeling at bay.
Include amla in your diet
If you come from a traditional household, you must have heard your elders talking about the benefits of amla. Did you know, this magic ingredient can help you lose weight?
Since amla is a bit bitter, not everyone likes to eat it. Having it in the juice form makes it easy to consume. You can add 2–3 spoons of amla juice or powder in water and drink it on an empty stomach in the morning.
Amla has an abundance of vitamin C. Along with fighting off toxins and boosting metabolism, it is also proved to reduce belly fat.
Sweat half an hour daily
Sure, all the gyms and fitness studios are closed; this doesn’t mean you can’t work out a bit at home. Take out the time to indulge in moderate exercises every day. You can do skipping and jumping. A few squats and sit-ups may also help.
Practise some yoga poses. Dance a bit with your kids. Some regular physical activity is crucial for everyone. If you don’t exhaust the extra calories you are taking in during lockdown, you won’t be able to slim down.
You can even create a journal and note down everything you do in the day. What you eat, what you drink, and how much you work out; everything should be specifically entered in the journal. When you look at it at night before going to bed, believe me, you will want to do better the next day.
Don’t blame the lockdown for your gain in weight. Instead, take this as an opportunity to shed out your extra calories and gain a higher fitness level.
Tommy Williamson did his degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. He has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.