Weight Loss Support - any night time strategies

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04-19-2005, 05:20 PM
Dear Friends I am a long running compulsive overeater. I struggle mainly at night after my family go to bed and Im so happy to have some peace and quiet . Unfortunately I am drawn to food when I am not hungry and eat most of my calories at night. Does anyone have suggestions for me for night Many Thanks Susanna

04-19-2005, 06:37 PM
What about going to bed when they do? I used to do the same thing, with both food & alcohol. Then I asked myself, "why don't I want to go to bed when my husband does?" and boy, that brought up some interesting stuff. (didn't have anything to do with him, it was a pattern that started a long time ago).

You could also simply do what Oprah does: have a "no eating after XX o'clock" rule that you stick to for a period of time, and see what happens. I try to drink Sleepytime tea at night instead of eating, which helps.

Jennifer 3FC
04-19-2005, 11:56 PM
Sugar Free hot cocoa! I think it tastes watery, so I add one pack of Splenda to it. Mmm!

04-20-2005, 02:32 PM
I have always been a late night eater. I stay home with three small children so rarely to I get to enjoy a meal uninterrupted. Like you, I enjoy the "me" time that comes only after everyone else has gone to bed. In the past I would snack like crazy. These days I just plan for a certain number of calories during that time. I my planned food in solitude and then I'm done. I don't have a schedule - I get this snack when I am ready for it regardless of how late it is. Should I not have enough calories left at the end of the day for this little indulgence I do what someone else suggested - I go to bed. Extra sleep is rare for me too so that is an occasional treat in itself.

04-20-2005, 03:00 PM
I also have planned calories for nighttime. On the whole, though, my key to avoiding night eating is keeping busy. It might be a project (real work like folding laundry or doing dishes, or something semi-fun like sorting photos or whatever), or it might be a hobby (needlework, crossword puzzle) or grooming (doing my nails). It's mostly about keeping my hands busy, but I also find that when my mind is actively engaged, it does not turn to food. TV is NOT active engagement, by the way. I never watch TV without something in my hands, even if it is a magazine or book to read during the commercials.

If I still really have to have something, hot tea with Splenda, especially something flavorful like Earl Grey, is satisfying, or I'll have the sugar-free, fat-free hot chocolate, or sugar-free Jell-O. Sometimes, though, I just have to turn off the light in the kitchen and say out loud to myself, "The kitchen is closed for the night." It's surprising how well that works.

04-20-2005, 03:24 PM
I second the nails!

I too, have a very serious problem with night-time eating. This is when I will binge, and consume twice the calories I did during the day. It's awful.
I'm going to try some of these suggestions too.

But one that does work for me is doing my nails, chips aren't so appetizing when you try to put them in your mouth and ruin all your work, or get a whiff of those toxic nail polish chemicals ;)
It takes me quite a while to do my nails the way I want them, and wrecking them is usually enough of a deterrent for me....plus...my nails look pretty and then I don't want to bite them!


04-20-2005, 07:35 PM
Instead of snacking, why not take a looooooong hot bubble bath, light some candles, play some soft music and just relax. Hope this helps. God Bless.

04-20-2005, 07:54 PM
hehe... I was just about to suggest the hot bath too! Put on a face mask, hair mask, and make a bubble bath! Maybe make the candle smell your treat. Walmart has some sweet smelling candles.

04-21-2005, 09:39 AM
Hey there

When the might time eating monster sneaks up on me, I kick his butt by eating low-fat popcorn or chewing GUM....the gum really helps and I try to do things to keep busy but I know it is hard...good luck to you and now you know there are MANY people, me included that have to fight off the late night monster EVERY night! You can do it though!!


http://www.3fatchicks.com/weight-tracker/img/bar-retro6/slider-cheer/lb/204/124/124/.png (http://www.3fatchicks.com/weight-tracker/index.php)

04-21-2005, 12:41 PM
Oh, and I forgot ... after eating dinner, brush your teeth! And brush them again if you feel a snack attack coming on!

04-22-2005, 08:04 PM
hehe....I read this one in an issue of ww's mag. from a reader..... LOL

When its time to make the lunches for school and you're tempted to snack (and the snacking might lead to other foods....) try whitening your teeth with those bleaching strips (ie Crest whitestrips) Not only are you avoiding foods while you prepare the lunches but you are also whitening your smile!!

04-24-2005, 11:04 PM
I plan for my night time snacking also. I save my portion of nuts for the day, a sugar free fudgsicle and a fruit. Its been working for me!! :D

I've also been having a 1/2 cup of sugar free chocolate pudding or s/f jello on some days. Sometimes I'll have a piece of laughing cow lite cheese w/ a whole grain rye cracker.

Geee...you think I like to eat? :lol:

04-25-2005, 12:48 PM
I usually plan to eat something relatively starchy right before bed, either high-protein cereal or a high-fiber cereal bar (Uncle Sam's.) That way I get to eat and go to sleep and I don't have to worry about it.

04-25-2005, 01:10 PM
I like to eat half a grapefruit or some oatmeal before bed...

04-25-2005, 10:19 PM
Hi Susanna
what a lot of good ideas there are already - I second the doing your nails and brushing your teeth ones! I also find that knitting is helpful - amazing how much time can pass without you realisng it while your'e knitting LOL! Another strategy is to put the stove timer on for, say, half an hour, when you feel like a snack, and tell yourself you can wait until then, and then next time stretch it out some more and so on. Half an hour on the exercise bike also helps the time pass :) Another strategy is to have lots of fairly yummy low-fat grazingfood in the house eg rice crackers, low-fat yoghurt etc to minimise damage if you do eat uneccessarily. One of my favourite "not-hungry-just-wanna-eat" foods is a huge bowl of those frozen mixed veggies (microwaved of course!) with chili sauce.
Anyway good luck and keep at it

04-26-2005, 10:38 AM
Hi Susanna,

Not sure if you're looking for snack ideas, or a way to control your compulsive nighttime eating. If it's the latter, pop on over to the Eating Disorder forums and read how others deal with it. I, too, used to eat compulsively, and it took some deep (very, very deep!) soul-searching to figure out why. I finally got a handle on it, and I hope you do, too. Best of luck to you!

05-02-2005, 10:39 AM
Something that could work for you, whatever plan you are on start counting your days worth of things at supper & finish next day after lunch. I did this for awhile on ww. I started counting my points at supper, then my snack & used rest of days points on my breakfast/lunch next day. That way if I overdid it at night , I adjusted my breakfast & lunch accordingly. I found this a easier way to count & didn't obsess so much at night about not having enough points for a snack. As long as it is within a 24 hr period it doesn't matter when you start counting - try it, it might help you.

05-03-2005, 11:11 AM
Some of my evening strategies:

~a cup of hot herbal tea

~keeping a health book or magazine, like Fitness or Shape by my favorite chair and reading an article or two

~I file my fingernails and apply a coat of clear nail polish for shine. (I find that colored polish takes too long to dry for me to do it in the evening before bed, but clear is 100% dry and hardened in about 10-15 minutes)

~Try crocheting, knitting, latch hook, needlepoint, cross stitch-any "handiwork" that you can do for a few minutes or hours every night to keep your hands busy

~a short (20 minutes or less) relaxing video such as pm/evening yoga, tai chi, stretching, etc. You don't want an exercise that is intense such as cardio or strength training right before bed-because you will have trouble sleeping-but a short relaxing one is great.

~I always keep about 100-150 calories left in the evening for a snack. If I build a snack allowance in, then I can have something and it is fine. Some of my faves are flavored rice cakes, a serving of fruit such as strawberries or a plum, a serving of diet hot cocoa, etc.