Nutrition Tips During Lockdown

There are no doubt lockdowns are hard (like really hard!), as they impact so many areas of our day-to-day life. Trying to juggle work commitments, managing home schooling, a limited social life, inability to see family members and on top of all that we are trying our best not to gain the ‘COVID’ kilo’s with gym’s closing, our fridges being closer than ever, and our comfort eating increasing.

I see so many people struggling with these changes in eating habits and environment’s, as ‘short lockdown’s’ continue to turn into lengthy stretched-out ordeals, making bouncing back into our healthy post-lockdown habits increasingly hard. As a result, we are trying to reverse poor eating habits that have developed during lockdown’s, such as weird eating times, increased junk food intake, less planned physical activity and maybe even an extra glass or two of wine a night.

But don’t fear, there are a few things we can do to help manage these food challenges during lockdown times.

1. Eating Habits
Grazing. Need I say more? A lot of us have transitioned from office life, to working from home life which means our fridge and our office are practically the same thing. This change in working environment, often means we’ve lost our routine which can lead to constant grazing on snacks all day. I recommend developing set eating times during the day and sticking to them. Really try your best to emulate what a normal day in the office would look like!

2.  Junk Food
If you’re finding you’re eating more junk food during lockdown periods, I suggest simply not having it in the house! Swap it more nutritious snacks, such as yoghurt, bliss balls, veggie sticks and hummus. If you are really craving some chocolate, just get the one snack sized bar and enjoy!

3. Emotional Eating
Firstly, emotional eating is normal. Eating for sadness, happiness and stress is a natural way of life and understanding this is the first step in attempting to manage it. I suggest creating space and time for yourself to understand what you are actually feeling. For example, are you bored or sad? Once you have identified your emotion, it allows you to develop strategies that are not food related such as folding the washing, reading a chapter in your book or completing 5 minutes of knitting. Write down your own to-do list that you can refer to when you feel like emotionally eating.

4. Get Creative
Lockdown’s can become very repetitive, so why not start experimenting in the kitchen. Maybe one night a week you can trial a new recipe?

5. Movement
For most of us our usual exercise routine is on hold, so try your best to get outside and get moving at least once a day.

Give these tips a go and remember to take care of yourselves during these times.

Sophie Taylor
Dietitian (APD), Kilmore Wellness Centre