In this post I will share with you a common issue on your weight loss journey and 3 tips on overcoming secret eating. Let’s get into it.
What is secret eating
Secret eating is the conscious choice to consume food throughout the day which you do not keep track of. For example lets say you log what you eat in a food journal and today you logged everything except a chocolate bar and a sugary drink you consumed at work. This act of consuming more food but not logging that food is secret eating.
The problem arises when all these additional calories over the week add up and eventually cause you to gain weight. You look over your food journal to see what went wrong but because you only logged certain meals the culprit food is nowhere to be seen in the log. This not only causes weight gain but it can also make you assume the new diet you are on is not working. My top 3 tips for beating secret eating are below.
Tip 1: Track your calories
Now when I say track your calories that means all calories. Including the small snacks you have that you don’t log in your food journal. If those small snacks make you go over your daily calorie deficit then you need to see those in the log so you can make smarter decisions in the future. Because if you do track all those additional calories you can see how bad the problem is and it can help you spot patterns. For example am I secretly eating during work or after work or is it post workout? You wont know until you start to track all of the calories you are eating.
Tip 2: Design your environment so its much harder to secretly eat
Designing your environment is just about not keeping food near you or in the cupboard that you know wont help your weight loss progress. I’m talking about the cookies in the cupboard. The donuts at work. These types of food which left in your environment can easily be eaten and not logged causing secret eating. You can stop this happening by not bringing home that food to put in your cupboard and if its available at work then you could move away from the food for about 20-30 minutes. Let everyone else have the food. Once you get back it will all be gone and you wont have to worry about it again.
Tip 3: When you shop for food do not shop hungry and do not shop without a shopping list
Going food shopping when you are hungry is a recipe for disaster as you will inevitably put items in your basket that will not help your diet or waistline. Whats worse is that when hungry you will want to put more in your basket which means this food could be in your cupboard for a while and lead to more days during the week which you could be eating this food which will derail your diet.
The second point here is to not go food shopping without a shopping list. This is so that when you go into a store you know exactly what you need to get. If you try to put something in your basket that is not on your list it makes you more aware that by putting that food in there is not part of the plan and that eating this food later will cause problems with your weight loss journey.
So what do you think of secret eating? Do you secretly eat? I hope these tips help you avoid the trap of secret eating. Let me know in the comments if you have any questions or additional tips that helped you.