Lunchtime is a very important time of day because it can either help to keep you energized into the evening, or do the opposite and make you feel lethargic and cranky.
Read below to learn the top 10 lunchtime mistakes you might be making:
1. You eat at your desk
If you are someone who goes into an office, you’ve probably eaten at your desk many times, am I right? Eating at your desk is a big diet mistake because you are very likely to be distracted by a number of things, including your computer, phone, work that needs to get done, coworkers, etc. When you are distracted, this means you eat more and feel less satisfied with your meal – not good!
Fix it: See your lunchtime as a break from work and a time to get out of the office to reset and recharge. Step out of your building, scope out the area, and find a bench or step where you can sit and fully place your attention on your meal.
2. You eat out everyday
If you are not the one preparing your meal, then you don’t know what all has gone into it. A seemingly healthy meal can actually be high in sugar, salt, bad fats, etc. This is because restaurants want their food to taste good, and so they add more oil, sugar, and/or salt.
Fix it: Make a lunch at home and bring it along to work. Even just starting with one day a week of bringing your lunch is beneficial.
3. You order delivery
Ordering delivery is even worse then eating out – at least if you are eating out you have to walk a bit! And if you are ordering delivery this probably means you plan to sit and eat at your desk, which is another mistake.
Fix it: Prepare a lunch at home and bring it to work. Then take your lunch outside and get a walk and some fresh air.
4. You’re not eating vegetables
Vegetables are key when it comes to a healthy meal, and lunch is no exception. Vegetables are high in water and fiber which help to keep you full and satisfied, plus they are full of vitamins and minerals.
Fix it: Always aim to add a cup of greens or veggies to your meal, no matter what you are eating.
5. You’re reading a screen while you eat
Scrolling through your phone or other device while you eat is distracting and can make you feel less satisfied and less full from your meal.
Fix it: Put all electronic devices away and place full attention on your meal, or put on headphones and listen to some soothing music while you eat.
6. You’re eating on the go
If you are walking or driving while trying to chow down, this is even worse then reading or watching something on a screen while you eat.
Fix it: Either wait to eat until you can sit down for a few minutes, or plan to eat your lunch before you need to travel.
7. You’re waiting too long to eat
If you wait too long to eat lunch to the point where you are starving, this is basically a guarantee that you will overeat later. Waiting too long to eat is stressful on your body and is also super uncomfortable!
Fix it: Try to not let more than 5 hours go by without eating. Plan to have a snack in between breakfast and lunch If you know you are going to need to take a late lunch.
8. You’re only eating carbs
Carbs trigger the feel good, soothing hormones in the body which is why eating carbs makes you feel good, but they can also make you feel tired. Think about how you feel after eating a bread heavy meal or a bowl of pasta meal of pasta.
Fix it: You don’t have to totally nix carbs from your lunch, but aim to add in some protein and fat as well.
9. You’re not eating enough
Having a lean lunch is great, but there is a fine line between eating lean and not eating enough.
Fix it: Be sure to get a good amount of protein, fiber, and fat to your meal to keep your full and satisfied.
10. You skip lunch
Skipping lunch might sound like a time-saver, but it is actually counterproductive. Food is fuel for your body and mind, and is what helps to keep your focused and energized. If you don’t have enough fuel, you can bet your productivity will suffer. Another big negative of skipping lunch is that you will likely be starving by the end of the day, which means you are very likely to stuff yourself at dinner.
Fix it: Carve out at least 20 minutes for lunch to give yourself enough time to eat slowly and digest your food.
Take full advantage of your lunchtime, and try to see it as a time to reset and recharge.