By Shani Petroff
This time of year candy is everywhere. When I walk down the aisles of supermarkets and drugstores, I’m inundated with package after package of Halloween treats.
Then there’s work where everyone brings in something sweet, and parties, and so on and so on.
Everywhere I turn temptation is at an all-time high, and I know that if I don’t have a plan, I will go way over my SmartPoints® budget.
So I’ve come up with one:
- For starters, I don’t buy big bags of candy. The store by my apartment was having a great sale on some of my favorite chocolate-y snacks. I debated if I should get them. I’ll only allow myself one or two a day, I said. But portion control has always been a struggle for me. Having that candy in my cabinet would be torture. Saying no in the store once is easier than saying no every five minutes while I sit in my apartment — so I make myself walk by the bags of candy when I see them in the aisle.
- Always have alternative snacks. People bring junk food to my office all the time. A cute Halloween cupcake can be half of my points for the day. To avoid taking something I don’t really want, I’ve been coming prepared. I have fruit and vegetables, but I also have things to satiate my sweet tooth. For example, I stashed a pint of Halo Top ice cream in the freezer (the whole pint is 8 points) — and since I’m at work, I’m less likely to eat the whole thing (I’m more of a closet eater). And I bring in protein bars that have chocolate in them. I choose the ones for 4 SmartPoints value — they are bigger and more filling than 4 points worth of candy, and it gives me something that feels almost like junk food to snack on.
- I use my bad habits (that I’m trying to change) to my advantage. I often eat way too much junk food, but I don’t like people to see me eating the junk food. So on the upside, if the candy jar is full at work, I won’t go up to it as much as I may like. And some of the mini candies are only 2 SmartPoints value — so if I plan for it, I can have one (as long as that won’t send me on a binge later in the evening). Or if I really want candy, I may split a bag with a friend — and make her hold it in her office. That way, I have to go in there to get a piece. Since we split it, I don’t take more than my share, or eat mine faster than her. (I hate that I’m a closet eater, but if it keeps me from ruining my eating at work, at least I can make the best of it.)
- I account some of my extra SmartPoints for a daily small piece of candy or other surprise treat — yet, I try not to use them. Throughout the week a lot of “surprises” come up. So, unless it’s something I truly want, I try not to waste the SmartPoints. Because when everyone is eating that truly spectacular dessert after dinner, I want to indulge too. If I went overboard on random pieces of candy at work, then either I can’t have the treat I really want or I go over my budget. (Neither is a situation I want to be in.)
Halloween is just the start of the food temptations this time of year. But a plan, some willpower, and sticking to healthy habits and the Weight Watchers program can help us get through while losing weight and still enjoying some of our favorite indulgences.
I’d love to hear from you. You can find I me on Connect at @shani!
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