5 Ways To Ditch Food Guilt During The Pandemic

by Anna Smith, MS, RDN, LDN

Last Updated: May 6, 2020

Let’s face it. There are a lot of food rules out there. And even worse, some of them are conflicting; one person says eggs are great while another tells you to avoid them. We, as Kroger Health Dietitians, know this because we hear it from our patients daily. Food rules often lead to food guilt, which is quite frankly, no fun. At Kroger Health, we strive to create an environment where eating is for both enjoyment and nourishment. We want you to feel great about what you eat. Here’s how to get started:
  1. Ditch the food rules.
    Yep, we said it. Time to let go of all those rules telling you how and when food should be eaten. Food can be for both celebration (mmm, birthday cake), supporting health (kale smoothie time), and just because (Friday pizza night anyone?). Setting strict rules about what, when, where, and how much to eat can cause extra stress that none of us need. We believe all foods fit and being healthy doesn’t mean suffering when it comes to food choices.
  2. Slow down.
    Quarantine life has halted our busy nature to allow for a slower-paced schedule and changes in normal routines – so take advantage of it! At mealtimes, enjoy a moment to eat slower. Become more aware of all the delicious smells, exciting textures, and yummy flavors your food has to offer. Slowing down helps you to be more present and mindful, leading to greater satisfaction at mealtimes.
  3. Limit distractions. This is going to sound crazy- but it's worth it. Try turning off the TV and putting down the phone at mealtimes. Tell email and Instagram they can wait. Limiting distractions, allows you to focus on your eating experience. You may notice you enjoy your food more because you are savoring every tasty bite.
  4. Get back to cooking.
    Dust off those pots and pans and fire up those stove burners because it is officially time to get back in the kitchen again. Cooking meals can help you feel proud, giving a great sense of accomplishment. Convenience cooking (hello, microwave) counts too! Feel free to save recipes with more culinary complexity for a rainy Saturday and keep weeknights fast and easy. Need some recipe inspiration? We've got you covered!
  5. Trust your body.
    It’s astounding when you think of all the human body can do! Run a marathon, heal from a surgery, grow a human, the list goes on. Your body is smart and capable. Resist the urge to override its cues telling you when you are hungry. If you are hungry, eat. If you are full, stop. If you want a snack, have it. Learning to trust your body’s signals can be a powerful tool in eliminating feeling guilty about what you eat.

2020 is a year of change, so why not embrace a new way to eat? Nourish your body, ditch the guilt, enjoy the food you eat. These tips can get you started, but it's OK to acknowledge that change can be hard. If you need some additional support, schedule a free telenutrition appointment to guide you on your personal journey to enjoying what you eat.

Disclaimer: This information is educational only and not providing healthcare recommendations. Please see a healthcare provider.

Anna Smith, MS, RDN, LDN

Anna Smith, MS, RDN, LDN

Anna is a positive, motivating dietitian who is ready to help make healthy happen in your life. Whether you have a medical condition or hoping to get back to your goal weight, Anna is eager to connect you with tasty recipes, budget-friendly food products, and time-saving hacks to ensure that your goals will be achieved. Outside of work, Anna enjoys barre/pilates, sushi, and online shopping!