Registered dietitian Rachel Paul, known as the collegenutritionist, who has a PhD in nutrition and behavior change, recently posted the above video on TikTok about how to stop overeating at night. She shared these three tips:
- Eat enough for dinner: If you're not eating a filling, satisfying dinner, you're going to be extra hungry.
- If you want dessert after dinner, plan for it: No food is "not allowed" or a "bad food."
- Use the "Urge Jar" for cravings when you're not physically hungry: Breathe through the craving, and put a coffee bean into the Urge Jar.
If you're confused by the last tip, Dr. Paul shared the below video to explain it more. This tool is only used if you're not physically hungry — if you're hungry, then eat! But if you're full and satisfied physically and you have a craving to eat something, but you're trying to lose weight or break a habit of overeating, she suggested first locating the craving feeling in your body, then think about what color it is and whether it's fast or slow.
Then, Dr. Paul said, "If you prefer to breathe through the craving instead of eating, tell yourself, 'I am learning to breathe through urges. Nothing bad is going to happen to me.'" She reassured that if you allow that craving feeling to happen and you breathe though it, the craving "goes away in one or two minutes." And then you can put a coffee bean in the Urge Jar. She said, "100 allowed urges is often equal to five or 10 pounds off of your body, because each bean represents a time where you would have eaten." If you're a visual person, this tool may work for you.