EP 18 – Eat This: Curbing Quarantine 15

I think it all started off with hoarding toilet paper. Then we realized that we’d better fill our fridges and cupboards with food otherwise the all that stockpiled TP won’t be needed. Then the baking. Bread rising either from a sourdough starter or just plain ‘ol yeast – if you could find it – loaves filled bellies and social media feeds. I saw homemade fancy apple cinnamon strudel cakes, cinnamon rolls, the most decadent chocolate chip cookies, donuts and that was around the same time as supermarket shelves emptied of all the convenience food they had. The pendulum has swung so far it’s smashed our reality as we know it.

The snack-a-thon was next. Work from home, feed the kids, homeschool the kids, give ‘em the 100th snack of the day, with a glass of wine in hand because there is some time zone out there drinking, it would be rude not to join them in solidarity. Coined was the term “Quarantine 15”, because well, that’s the trajectory of weight gain during this time. Is this you? Can you relate?

Let’s talk about that, how you and some of my followers are doing, and get to 3 ways to curb your Quarantine 15.

I know that emotional eating is real for so many people, and with all that’s been going on, it’s hit a new high and I’ve seen a split in how our time in isolation has hit people. I took to social media to see what people were finding… what I got back actually surprised me.

No matter where you are in all this, just fine, need to shed a few of those extra snacks, or you’ve lost a pound or 5, let me share three things that you can do right now.

Number 1

I’m way more of an add the good stuff person than take away all the bad, in case you didn’t pick that up before now. So with that in mind Eat more fruits and veggies. The more fruit and veggies that you eat, like half a plate’s worth when you plate up your meal or snack, and it leaves less room for the unhealthy. Let’s keep it simple. Grab a banana, an orange, or an apple. Pick up some berries, or try a pear or some other fruit that you haven’t tried in a long time. Get out those greens and pile them high with grated carrot, beets with a side of tuna, salmon, chicken or beans. Stir fry anything and use your frozen stash here and throw in some extra spinach or kale. 

I heard from a client who cleared out her mom’s freezer and found a rogue bag of corn buried at the bottom, so she made my Corn Coconut Soup that I cooked in the #cooktogether series on @SproutRight’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. Soup is the perfect catch-all for veggies and protein – like lentils, beans, or quinoa.

Second on my action list for you

Ditch the booze and HYDRATE – I know, I know. Don’t switch off now, hear what I have to share. I read this week that asked, “Can alcohol slow down weight loss efforts?” The answer in a word is, YES. Drinking alcohol can make it harder to lose weight.

It’s high in calories and those calories are empty calories. Anti-calories because they take away nutrients. Typically, you consume your normal daily intake, and don’t think “I won’t have that snack because I”m going to have a rum and coke later…” so your calories in go way up. Then there’s that alcohol interferes with the body’s fat-burning mechanisms. I need to say that again… alcohol interferes with the body’s fat-burning mechanisms. Then the last thing you feel like after a few drinks is to exercise. So all in all, it’s not helping.

Ok, to help you drink more, let’s talk post-its. Take 8 Post-it notes and stick them in a line somewhere in your house. Number them if you want, or don’t. Every time you drink a glass of water, move one off your line to somewhere else so you can keep track. The number one thing that I hear from clients is that they don’t drink enough water and that they don’t know how much they drank.

To get you started, drink a large glass with half a squeeze of lemon water to wake up your liver and kidneys. Take that glass to bed and down it as soon as you wake. One Post-it, DONE. In my case, I’m going to have three post its because I have to use a water bottle cause I lose my glasses and find it easier to count bottles than glasses.

And last but not least – Move

We have to move and that could look like a walk, yoga class, online workout of some kind or bike ride. I’ve heard of many who have done nothing and might need a kick in the pants to get moving. A personal trainer that I know, Samantha Monpetit-Huynh, or @SamCoreTrainer on social media, does challenges with her clients. Sam is here to explain why a challenge works so well for some, and not for others…..

Sam says it’s about committing and following through. Some people who sign up for her challenges pay, and don’t show up. That is NOT doing it, it doesn’t give you the ability to say you did it, no. You have to show up knowing that this is the beginning of making change.

Sam also said that her challenges are unlike others. She focuses on connection with yourself first and then making changes. She finds that the community in her challenges is also part of her secret sauce because when one shares their success, it shows others that they can do it too and that keeps the motivation and momentum going.

A friend’s 14-year-old daughter was in crisis this week because she feels her body has changed (yes, could be hormones) but she pretty much lived at the karate dojo leading classes as well as being in class herself, and she says her body feels different, not in a good way. And that has totally affected how she feels about herself. 

Know you’re not alone here and this is affecting people of all ages. 

At the end of the day, we will come out of this and we will either roll into a new normal or run feeling strong, healthy in both body and mind. If you need a kick in the pants, take this as one. 

Get more recipes in my book Sprout Right Family Food.

More recipes are available in my book Sprout Right Family Food—plus everything there is to know about getting your family off to a nutritious start, from birth to school age and beyond.

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