The four-letter word that’ll help you stop snacking when you should be sleeping.

diet plan

Co-owning an online fitness guide, we always have people contacting us about food, eating habits, and being healthy.

One of the main topics we are constantly helping people tackle is, ‘how do I stop bingeing on unhealthy treats after dinner?’.

After transforming 40,000 bodies worldwide, we’ve noticed a trend where people start their health and fitness journey the same way… they eat healthy during the day but when the clock strikes 8pm their stomach suddenly has a mind of its own.

Whilst binge eating can be a serious health concern, we’re specifically talking about binge snack sessions.

You know, those ‘after dinner treats’ where you end up eating every biscuit, packet of chips, chocolate, flavoured drink, and all the other salty/sweet goods you can get your hands on.

Before you know it, not only have you ruined all your hard work that day – but potentially every healthy meal and gym session for the rest of the week too.

‘But I just can’t control it, I just can’t help it”…

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Sounding familiar?

Baffled by portion control? Us too, so we made this video to simplify thing. Post continues after video.

Video by MWN

Overindulging can be a common problem for people who are new to health, and it can be a frustrating bad habit to kick.

Most people don’t understand why they can’t stop snacking and as a result, give up on their healthy eating plans before reaching their goals.

At FitazFK we have one rule, one four letter word, that we use to stop these late night binge sessions in their tracks. And it’s not D-I-E-T.

As late night sugar cravings are often a result of you creating peaks and troughs in your blood sugar level throughout the day by poor eating habits, the four letter word is P-L-A-N.

When it comes to ditching the over eating it’s all in the setup – or more importantly not setting yourself up for failure.

It’s really that simple. There is this misconception that healthy eating is hard, but your late night snacks can be avoided if you are prepared, organised, and think ahead.

‘But I don’t know how to plan my food to avoid this’…

Don’t stress! We’ve broken down how to say bye to the binge with these five easy planned steps:

1. Plan your meals

We’ve put this as step one because this is what is going to make you or break you.

The reason why our clients never feel the need to over indulge is because we supply them with a meal plan that helps them maintain a consistent energy level.

We also make sure that everyone meets their calorie consumption needs for the day. Most often people over-snack when they aren’t eating enough during the day. They ‘starve’ themselves to lose weight, and just end up binging at night.

When it comes to stopping these snack cravings, you need to plan your meals around proteins and low GI foods.

These give you sustained energy and stop any peaks or troughs in your glucose levels. In layman’s terms this means you will stay full, energised, and focused longer – you won’t even think of snacking.

Proteins include meat, eggs, oats, chickpeas and natural greek yogurt. Your low GI foods could also be sweet potato, lentils, grain bread and dairy.

You also need to make sure your food consumption matches your activity for the day. If you are doing a killer workout, you need to have more to eat then if you were just spending a day relaxing at home.

Side note – the Out Loud crew discussed the new diet that combines paleo and veganism… intrigued? Post continues after audio.

2. Plan when you eat

Snacking can be a result of you always missing breakfast, or never having your lunch at the right time.

Instead of you eating when you should, your body tries to make up for loss time at night. Planning exactly when you should be eating meals will help you achieve consistent and balanced food consumption.

Meal prepping once or twice a week can be a great way to figure out your schedule.

Spending time preparing your meals in advance also means you won’t want to let all your effort go to waste. It’s simple – if you have nothing prepared you’re not going to feel inclined to eat on schedule.

3. Plan to stick to your scheduled eating (no skipping meals!)

It’s all well and good to plan what and when you are going to eat, but for this to be effective you have to put it into practice.

Your brain is an incredible organ that has developed over thousands of years. It’s smart enough to figure out that sugar = instant energy.

If you’ve skipped meals no doubt your body is telling you to refuel and sugar is its quick fix. We are NOT about quick fixes, so when things get in the way you can’t ‘forget’ to have your food because you were ‘busy’.

To avoid this, we recommend you put reminders on your smart phone when it’s time for your meals.

If you are someone who is constantly on the go we also recommend that you prepare accordingly. Make meals that don’t require a fridge and pack foods in car/walking friendly containers.

4. Plan to get enough sleep

The hormone leptin is significantly reduced when you spend too many nights up late. Leptin is the guy responsible in making you feel full.

What’s worse? The less sleep you get the more gherlin hormone you produce, which tells your brain you are hungry.

Usually this means by the night time you can no longer resist the urge to snack because you’re tired and hormonal. Your body confuses sleep for hunger, and the rest is history.

We suggest getting the recommended eight-ten hours of sleep at night to keep this at bay.

Meditate and stretch before going to bed to relax your body (or Georgio’s favourite is a chamomile tea before bed).

Make sure your phone is off, or at least on silent, and not next to your bed to avoid any distractions.

Just an added bonus as well, if you get eight-ten hours sleep a night compared to say five, you have three to five less hours to snack a day.

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5. Plan on trying something new

It’s broke, yet you don’t want to fix it? Right now whatever meal plan or eating habits you have aren’t satisfying your body – if they were you wouldn’t feel this uncontrollable need to eat… and eat. So why not try switching it up a bit?

Here at FitazFK we are always on the pulse and we have recently gotten into intermittent fasting.

This is where you confine your eating to eight hours only a day – whether that be 6am to 2pm, or 12pm  to 8pm, or whatever works for your schedule.

Not only does intermittent fasting help with your hormones, metabolism and bloating, it’s also great at helping you get a grip on your sugar cravings by improving your insulin sensitivity.

By delaying your first meal for the day you actually combat your bodies insulin response to cortisol levels which are highest upon rising.

We know what you are thinking, isn’t skipping meals exactly what you just told me not to do? Correct! Intermittent fasting is safe fasting. Within those eight hours you still consume a full day’s worth of calories just within a shorter amount of time.

Switching up your eating habits is all about listening to your body, and what it needs. It takes awhile to get into the swing of a new eating plan, but if you start to feel good stick with it!

 Georgio Batsinilas and Aaron McAllister run FITAZFK, an online fitness program founded by the ex-athletes turned entrepreneurs. 

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