Stress eating? Try these 6 tips to stay avoid binge eating during COVID-19 – SILive.com

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — As COVID-19 spreads like wildfire on Staten Island and the world, many are feeling increasingly stressed out, anxious about the health of families and friends, and preoccupied with the tanking economy. To cope with stress, many people have to resorted to stress eating.

According to Psychology Today, stress eating, aka emotional eating, is a conscious or unconscious effort to suppress or soothe negative emotions. Eating patterns change for the worse, from overeating to severe caloric restriction.

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This is unhealthy, especially when the foods we often grab to self-soothe are usually high in salt, sugar, and fat. Here are six hints to curb stress eating.

1. Meal preps: Take out the stress of wondering what to eat throughout the week. Plan healthy meals at the start of the week, and prep all at once. Blue Apron offers traditional recipes in addition to Beyond Meat, Weight Watchers-approved, diabetes-friendly and healthy-conscious offerings. Introductory offer is $39.94 for first five boxes/3 recipes for 2 people, reduced from $59.94 per week ($9.99 per serving). Shipping is free.

Here’s a look at some more meal kit options.

Blue Apron

2. Prepare snacks in advance: This will control portion size and prevent snack binging on potato chips and Twizzlers. Try blending your favorite vegetables and nuts with ice for healthy smoothies. The Magic Bullet is a good blender to use and check out FoodNetwork.com for these delicious recipes for smoothies. Keep a food journal to track what you eat, how much of it and when.

3. Find healthier options. If your smoothies are not satisfying you, consider a lower-calorie, lower-fat option than the junk food you go-to in times of stress. For example, cut up an apple and dip in peanut butter. Ordering online supports social distancing. Amazon Fresh is an example for free grocery delivery for Prime Members.

4. Savory options can help drive the munchies away: Consider a spicy hummus, available on Amazon Prime, a great dip for your carrot sticks and slices of celery. Deviled eggs are a good option, too. Check out Delsih.com for tasty and healthy snack options, by clicking here.

Savory hummus, babaganoush, lebneh, eggplant salad and stuffed grape leaves. (Staten Island Advance/Pamela Silvestri)

5. Watch portion size. Instead of taking the whole box with you, put a snack-size amount in your purse or briefcase, in case you get hungry. Now that most people are quarantined in their homes, consider snack-sized oprions when grocery shopping. Check out snacknation.com or peapod.com for individually-packaged snack options.

6. Get social support to avoid stress eating triggers. With the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us feel isolated and alone, feelings that may lead to loneliness and stress eating. Reach out to friends and family through apps like zoom.com or face-time through any Apple product.

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