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What do you do for boredome eating / night snacking (oral fixation)?

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Hey guys!

I am new to the site & trying to work on my eating habits.  I actually don't eat much but when I do it's late at night (b/c of my schedule) and it's constant snacking (usually when I watch movies, tv, etc).  I've found out that I have an oral fixation whether it be nailbiting, smoking, drinking, talking, - which is a nervous habit usually derived from nerves or boredom. 

Anyone else have this problem?  Any suggestions?


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I am totally a night-snacker.  Also an ex-smoker, and cigarettes definitely fulfilled that oral fixation for me.  But I'm much happier as an ex-smoker, it was worth it to quit!

I've figured out a couple things that help:

 1.  Try adjusting your eating earlier in the day.  I find that a big dinner reduces the snack urge at night.  A big lunch or breakfast does nothing to reduce the night-snacking.

 2.  Figure out what it is that soothes the oral fixation:  sweet?  crunchy?  salty? creamy?  Then figure out a lower-calorie alternative to fix that jones.  For example, when I want something sweet, I eat a bowl of frozen blueberries instead of ice cream (they're really low calorie, and it takes forever to eat them when they're frozen!)  If I want something crunchy, a fresh salad or carrot sticks with a little bit of hummus is really satisfying.  If I want something salty, some miso soup with seaweed is good.

 3.  Try hot liquids.  Something about sipping a good cup of herb tea or hot cocoa is really satisfying.

 4.  This is something I've never done before, but I swear its been amazing:  I got chinese herbs from an accupuncturist.  They come in a brandy solution in a little bottle with a "jigger" spout on top, so you have to shake the bottle to get a single drop out.  The formula is "Female Stress Remedy".  10-20 drops on the tongue at night not only kills the snacking urge, but sooths that boredom/stress response, too.  I don't know if I'm allowed to post other websites on this board, but check out heavenly bodies clinic in Arlington, Virginia.

 Good luck!

One more thing: do something other than watch TV, so that your hands and/or mind are active. Its a lot hard to eat a bag of chips when you're turning the pages of a book or magazine. Sometimes I spend an hour or two at night making healthy food for the next day - snacks and lunch to take to work. That occupies my mind and my hands, and keeps me focused on healthy food, instead of mindless snacking.
knitting really helps.
I just want you to know i caught the end of the title is all and i am severly disapointed with the direction of this post -_-
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ha ha - nitting and chewing gum? lol
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ha ha - nitting and chewing gum? lol
I play games, Sudoku is nice =)

It keeps your mind busy and your hands!  I can seriously blow away hours just playing it haha

I did yesterday when I felt the munchies coming on..
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"I just want you to know i caught the end of the title is all and i am severly disapointed with the direction of this post -_-  "

lol - I thought about that after I put it in the title.  Hope I don't offend anyone

ha ha

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these are great recommendations - thank you so much :)
Get one of those pre-strung floss things and floss your teeth.  Or a soft toothbrush and brush them.
Brushing your teeth does help, b/c with the exception of a glass of water....very few things taste good after brushing your teeth!!
If there's an oral fixation at work, you might want to try sugar free chewing gum.  In addition, make it peppermint  or cinnamon gum - I've discovered that the strong flavor drives a lot of my sweet cravings away, particularly if the cravings are triggered by smell (have to have gum if I'm around a bakery....)
Low-cal popcorn like Healthy Pop is also really good for snacking, because it's something like 25 calories/cup. You can eat a whole giant bowl and it's only 100 calories or so. That's pretty satisfying for the munchies.
I eat a half-cup of fiber one.
Like, nibble on the individual fiberlettes (:p each little cereal thing) and it takes a long time to do.

Plus it adds fiber to your diet!

Though I like Fiber one, so if you don't I'd say gum and hot tea (just not together. Ick).

It is always good to think to yourself "am I really hungry or do I just want something to chew on". If you are a night owl and will be up for 6 or more hours it may not hurt to have a small snack like a half of a turkey sandwich or a small bowl of cereal. However, if you plan on going to bed in a little bit try some healthy low calorie snacks like apple slices, carrot or celery sticks. Think fruits and veggies, they will give you a nice crisp snack with very few calories.

I do things that make it hard to eat, like play the piano or (in nice weather) go for a walk, even if it's dark. I find hot decaf tea is also nice, plus it's soothing and helps me relax for sleep. Chew gum, too. And brush your teeth after your last official meal for the day. If you feel hungry, drink something. If you are still a little hungry, remind yourself that all you have to do is go to sleep and when you wake up it'll be time for breakfast!

I know all about oral-fixations, and not just for food (although goodness knows I can't stop eating!). I used to chew my hands, arms, and knuckles as a kid, and even have calluses on my knuckles to prove it. Sometimes I find myself gnawing again... and have to make myself stop. It's an awful habit.

GUM! i swear by it
Carrots, mints, sip on water
I can totally identify with the oral fixation issue.  Hot tea or broth is great (you can get low-salt graunule bullion - 5 cals per cup) as well as sunflower seeds in the shell.  Getting those seeds out of their shells will keep your mouth very busy and hopefully satisfy that particular craving.

i schedule my gym sessions for the evening.  I wait dinner until I return at 9:00 and then, soon thereafter I am tired from the gym and eating and its bedtime.  Less night eating when I do this.


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