Anyone else have trouble not snacking while reading?

No Snacks, no sweets, no seconds. Except on Days that start with S. Too simple for you? Simple is why it works. Look here for questions, introductions, support, success stories.

Moderators: Soprano, automatedeating

Post Reply
stoogeswoman
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:38 pm
Location: San Fernando Valley, CA

Anyone else have trouble not snacking while reading?

Post by stoogeswoman » Wed Aug 31, 2016 11:31 pm

Hey everyone - I've been away for a while (since 2013, according to the list of my posts!) and am going to give the No S Diet another try.

I think it's a great idea, but here's where I kept falling by the wayside last time: I am a voracious reader - all year round, but especially in the autumn/winter (which is approaching faster than you might think, looking outside right now!).

And of course, as anyone else who loves to read knows all too well - it's really easy to get addicted to having that bowl of popcorn or other type of snacks right next to you, to munch on distractedly while you immerse yourself in your reading!

Now - it occurred to me that I might be able to transition from the *food* snacks to a *beverage* snack - like a big mug of coffee or maybe some flavored tea.

Is that considered OK on the "No S" plan? And has anyone else on this forum ever dealt with this issue?

Thanks for any constructive suggestions/commiseration!

(however, just FYI: I don't plan to stop reading!)

Christine :)

User avatar
Merry
Posts: 1658
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 2:14 am

Post by Merry » Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:02 am

Welcome back!

I'm more of a computer and TV snacker than a reading snacker (I like to read--I just never got in the habit of snacking while reading! Usually I read in bed, and I don't want snacks there.)

Anyway, I do just what you suggested--I either have a big cup of water or a cup of coffee/tea instead of a snack now. (In fact, I was surprised to realize just how often I snacked while I'm on the computer. I work from home, and any time a more involved question came up, that apparently was my trigger to go get a snack to think about it! That happens multiple times per day! So now I do get up to walk/think about it, but I get water or tea/coffee instead.)

On the plus side, I'm drinking more water these days!
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.
2 years and counting on No-S.
29 lbs. down, 34 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.
Respect Moderation

stoogeswoman
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:38 pm
Location: San Fernando Valley, CA

Post by stoogeswoman » Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:25 am

Thanks!

I think the reason it needs to be coffee or tea, instead of water, for me (hey, that rhymes!) is that it needs to be some kind of "treat" - something I can consume slowly while reading.

It just feels *weird* to me to read a book and not have something to sip/munch on - ya know?

oolala53
Posts: 9635
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:46 am
Location: San Diego, CA USA

Post by oolala53 » Thu Sep 01, 2016 3:44 am

That's what breaking a habit feels like: weird. It often doesn't feel good to limit food! Remember why you've decided to moderate your eating with meals. Are you getting anything in exchange for the sacrifice? Can you get what you want down the line if you keep the reading/eating habit? (Reasoning always has to precede strategies for me.)

That being said, the beverage is a decent compromise. I believe in a few weeks, it will feel a little weird to read and eat. You'll see that you just can't give the food its due.

I may not be the most sympathetic listener. Years before No S, I broke the pairing that is incredibly entrenched in American society: movies in a theater and food. I can't believe what a kneejerk connection that is. It helped that I am cheap. And that I often went right after a meal. Doesn't mean I didn't for years justify eating a lot more crap hunkered down at home alone.

But, may I gently suggest: couldn't reading become its own treat? :wink:
Count plates, not calories. Three a day. 9 years & counting
Age 65
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
Jan/12-26.8
Mar/13-24.9 Stayed at +/- 8-lb. for three years Sept/17 22.8 (but more fluctuation)
Mar/18 22.2

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.

e-lyn
Posts: 198
Joined: Mon May 23, 2016 7:11 pm

Post by e-lyn » Thu Sep 01, 2016 4:25 am

My favorite pairing has always been family TV watching and snacks! Now, it's only on the weekend and only 'sometimes'. And like oolala, I also looked forward to theater popcorn and a movie. Sometimes the popcorn more! Now my criteria for seeing a movie in a theater is....do I want to see it even if I can't eat popcorn? I'm going out to the movies a lot less often now.

When I was a kid, my dad was addicted to a trio...coffee, donuts, and cigarettes. He basically had to give up all three in order to stop smoking. I had a wicked coffee and dessert thing going for years. I gave up the combo before NoS but sometimes it still comes back to haunt me!

Welcome back to NoS...!
Last edited by e-lyn on Thu Sep 01, 2016 4:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

stoogeswoman
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:38 pm
Location: San Fernando Valley, CA

Post by stoogeswoman » Thu Sep 01, 2016 4:25 am

Of course reading is a treat in itself - no denying that.

But there's also no denying that on a cold winter's day, it is absolutely heavenly to snuggle down under a warm comforter with a good book and a hot mug of cocoa bursting with marshmallows - is there?

Of course, that's probably what the "S" days are for! :D

oolala53
Posts: 9635
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:46 am
Location: San Diego, CA USA

Post by oolala53 » Thu Sep 01, 2016 4:36 am

If hot chocolate with marshmallows is all the reading and snacking done, it's probably not a problem.
Count plates, not calories. Three a day. 9 years & counting
Age 65
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
Jan/12-26.8
Mar/13-24.9 Stayed at +/- 8-lb. for three years Sept/17 22.8 (but more fluctuation)
Mar/18 22.2

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.

ceo418
Posts: 202
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2015 10:26 pm
Location: Plainsboro, NJ

Post by ceo418 » Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:13 pm

I often relax in the evenings or on weekend mornings after breakfast with a book and a cup of tea. I drink tea without any sugar or milk or anything like that added to it, but I do have several varieties of flavored tea and I don't see anything wrong with that, or with a small cup of hot chocolate or coffee if that's what you desire. Even if you added some sweetener to the coffee on an N-day, that should be perfectly fine.

I used to have cookies or chocolate bars with my weekday evening reading and tea sessions, but after some time had passed I didn't even miss the food and still have the drink. So I say if it helps keep you on habit with everything else, go ahead and have flavored tea or coffee with your book!

User avatar
kaalii
Posts: 745
Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2016 9:42 pm
Location: switzerland

Post by kaalii » Thu Sep 01, 2016 1:06 pm

tea, herbal infusions, coffee... are all allowed in noS...
substitute sweets/snacks with them...
i did it with my nightime/internet/movies/series rituals...
it was hard, but soooo worth it...
now it is easy...
Age:40
BMI: 18.8
Body Fat %: 17.6
in it for maintenance and, more importantly, sanity!!

stoogeswoman
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:38 pm
Location: San Fernando Valley, CA

Post by stoogeswoman » Thu Sep 01, 2016 2:26 pm

Thanks for all your suggestions! I'm going shopping today so maybe I'll indulge myself and get some kind of flavored coffee that I haven't tried before, and start the No S train on the tracks today! :-)

stoogeswoman
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:38 pm
Location: San Fernando Valley, CA

Post by stoogeswoman » Fri Sep 02, 2016 2:07 am

Er, although ... tomorrow is my birthday - definitely an "S" day - followed by, um, Saturday and Sunday ... and Labor Day ... good grief, four "S" days in a row?

Ya know, I'm okay with Labor Day not being all that "S"!! :P

noni
Posts: 613
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 2:01 pm

Post by noni » Sat Sep 03, 2016 12:29 pm

I enjoy reading and also watching some tv. I used to always have a snack when doing these activities. It was difficult at first to give up the snacks, but now, and for years, I only have hot tea, summer or winter. I come to enjoy settling down with it when I read or watch, just as much as the snacks - maybe more because I don't have that heavy-feeling in my stomach or the regret.

stoogeswoman
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:38 pm
Location: San Fernando Valley, CA

Post by stoogeswoman » Sat Sep 03, 2016 10:17 pm

noni wrote:I enjoy reading and also watching some tv. I used to always have a snack when doing these activities. It was difficult at first to give up the snacks, but now, and for years, I only have hot tea, summer or winter. I come to enjoy settling down with it when I read or watch, just as much as the snacks - maybe more because I don't have that heavy-feeling in my stomach or the regret.
Yes, I think hot (or iced) tea is a really good idea and a nice alternative to constant snacking. It fills the need to have "a little somethin' somethin' " without filling the stomach. Thanks! :-)

oolala53
Posts: 9635
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:46 am
Location: San Diego, CA USA

Post by oolala53 » Mon Sep 05, 2016 6:51 am

It is perfectly possible to enjoy the foods of Labor Day with no S's. You'll probably really like it after the last three days. A relief! And only five days until S's again.
Count plates, not calories. Three a day. 9 years & counting
Age 65
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
Jan/12-26.8
Mar/13-24.9 Stayed at +/- 8-lb. for three years Sept/17 22.8 (but more fluctuation)
Mar/18 22.2

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.

Dale
Posts: 144
Joined: Sat Apr 07, 2012 7:27 am

Post by Dale » Fri Sep 09, 2016 6:41 pm

I use hot beverages as a snack replacement, and find it very effective! Mostly tea or coffee (decaffienated in the evenings), with a little bit of milk, sometimes herbal teas. It's a little bit of a treat, and also takes quite a while to consume (and often helps to stave off hunger). It's NOT as fun as chewing, I will admit that, but definitely better than nothing.

User avatar
MamieTamar
Posts: 50
Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 8:12 pm
Location: France

Post by MamieTamar » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:25 am

This may sound very old-fashioned, but... why keep any snacks at all at home ? Just don't buy them !
My body is like breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I don't think about it, I just have it. (Arnold Schwarzenegger)

age 74
SBMI:29
CBMI: 27,7

stoogeswoman
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:38 pm
Location: San Fernando Valley, CA

Post by stoogeswoman » Fri Sep 16, 2016 7:44 pm

MamieTamar wrote:This may sound very old-fashioned, but... why keep any snacks at all at home ? Just don't buy them !
Sorry I didn't see this earlier to respond to it.

I have two answers for you: first, not everyone in your home may be on board with your "No S" plan, so they are bound to want to keep their snacks around.

Second, and I can speak from experience: ANYTHING is a potential snack, when you're tempted to snack! For example, I have hard cheddar cheese in the fridge. It's for salads and casseroles. It also makes a very tempting snack!

Whosonfirst
Posts: 467
Joined: Thu Nov 16, 2006 12:32 pm
Contact:

Post by Whosonfirst » Fri Sep 16, 2016 8:34 pm

MamieTamar wrote:This may sound very old-fashioned, but... why keep any snacks at all at home ? Just don't buy them !
Love your rational thinking. I'm a fruit lover, would rather just keep fruits available in case a snack is "needed". Better than a humongous bag of chips/popcorn or a whole pack of Oreo cookies(guilty as charged). As a boy, one time my dad tracked me down to go somewhere when I was on my bike. I asked how he did that, and he said "Easy, I just followed the Hershey bar wrappers". That was kind of a wake-up call. I think we all have to be honest with ourselves when things aren't going as planned with NoS or any other diet. We tend to reward ourselves with food or marginalize our excessive snacking to others and more importantly to ourselves. This isn't directed at anyone but the man in the mirror, hey I should write a song...jk.

reizen
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2015 12:15 pm

Post by reizen » Wed Sep 21, 2016 6:24 pm

It's a serious issue and simply an associative habit - we all have them - I tend to pull my hair when I read. But simple does not mean easy!

I trained myself early to not snack during tv, reading, work etc. This is mindless snacking and a scientifically guaranteed way of eating way too many calories. See Brian Wansink's brilliant and very entertaining book - Mindless eating for exactly how much extra you eat when distracted. he did experiments in movie theatres with different sized buckets of stale popcorn - distracted people ate and ate - and they ate more if the box was bigger, period.

If you must snack - my advice would be to choose very small containers and to keep the rest of the snacks out of arm's reach and line of vision.

I do however substitute snacks with beverages, teas, coffees, lots and lots of water. When I was first learning to avoid snacking while busy I used gum, which is a classic smoking cessation strategy for the same association issue.

Mindful eating is a great habit - something that No S forces me to do. I really look forward to my meals and I would not want to waste any morsel by being distracted.

Post Reply