How to Eat Less During Lockdown

There are certain strategies that can help you eat less during lockdown so you can reduce the risk of gaining weight due to a decrease in physical activity.
How to Eat Less During Lockdown
Saúl Sánchez Arias

Written and verified by the nutritionist Saúl Sánchez Arias.

Last update: 27 May, 2022

One thing that a lot of people are worried about during coronavirus quarantine is the possibility of gaining weight. During this time, we tend to exert less energy given the obvious reduction in physical activity. Therefore, we need to make up for this by reducing the amount of food we eat each day. Today, we’ll help you figure out how to eat less during lockdown.

There are several tricks you can use to help you meet your goal and keep anxiety from causing you to overeat. It’s simply a question of activating a hormonal response that impacts your body’s appetite and fullness mechanisms. In the following article, we’ll look at some tips that will help you out. That way, you’ll keep your hunger in check and your anxiety at bay.

Fasting during lockdown

Skipping breakfast is associated with an increase in the growth hormone (GH) and, therefore, with greater lipolysis. What’s more, given a series of hormonal interactions between the GH and the ghrelin hormone, you’re less likely to feel hungry in the morning than any other time of day.

During the fasting period, you can only consume black coffee, tea, water, and calorie-free beverages. Also, you can take advantage of the anorectic (appetite suppressing) effects of coffee to reduce your need to eat during the morning. Remember not to sweeten your coffee or you’ll interrupt the hormonal mechanisms of fasting.

This dietary protocol is associated with a noticeable improvement in body composition, according to a study published in Clinical Nutrition ESPEN. What’s more, it produces improvements in lipid profile and insulin sensitivity .

Unless you’re pregnant or suffer from frequent uncontrolled migraines, this protocol may be right for you. Start by not eating breakfast just three times a week. When you do, try not to consume caloric foods or drinks for intervals of at least 16 hours.

If you already have experience with fasting, then you can extend this recommendation to every day. Seasoned experts can even do a 24 hour fast once a week in order to further reduce their global calorie computation.

Choose oatmeal as your main carbohydrate choice

The key mechanism to control your eating is feeling full. If you stimulate this situation, you’ll manage to consume fewer calories per day. There are certain foods that have the ability to induce a sense of feeling full. These are usually proteic foods or foods that are rich in fiber.

One of your options is oatmeal. This cereal contains a high quantity of beta-glucans that help suppress appetite, according to evidence in Nutrition Reviews. What’s more, oatmeal possesses the ability to selectively stimulate bacterial growth in the intestine.

This modification of the intestinal flora can improve body composition, according to an article published in the journal European Journal of Internal Medicine.

Consume plenty of vegetables during lockdown

The best way to reduce your daily caloric intake is by reducing your consumption of processed foods. In their place, it’s good to prioritize fresh foods, such as fruit and vegetables. Fruit contains a high amount of water and fiber. This way, you increase your hydration while also making yourself feel more full.

Another advantage of vegetables is their caloric density. For this reason, you can allow yourself to eat an abundant amount of vegetables without it having a negative effect on your total energy computation. Accompanying your dishes with a large number of vegetables is a good way to calm your appetite and your anxiety.

You shouldn’t forget that these foods contain vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. All of these micronutrients will help correct your organic functions .

You may also want to read: Can Food Be Contaminated by Coronavirus?

Eat less during lockdown: What to keep in mind

If you want to eat less during lockdown, you simply need to get organized and choose the right foods. Do intermittent fasting and prioritize the consumption of fresh foods over processed foods. These are both good strategies when it comes to limiting your calorie intake.

What’s more, we recommend choosing foods that are rich in fiber. That way, you can stimulate the mechanisms in your body that make you feel full. Try not to buy foods that are high in sugar that will drive you to fall into temptation. Rather, fill your kitchen with fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Santos HO., Macedo RCO., Impact of intermittent fasting on the lipid profile: assesment associated with diet and weight los. Clin Nutr ESPEN, 2018. 24: 14-21.
  • Dao MC., Clément K., Gut microbiota and obesity: concepts relevant to clinical care. Eur J Intern Med, 2018. 48: 18-24.
  • Rebello CJ., O’Neil CE., Greenway FL., Dietary fiber and satiety: the effects of oats on satiety. Nutr Rev, 2016. 74 (2): 131-47.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.