By Bryn Mooth, for SparkPeople
What's for dinner? What are you eating for breakfast or lunch tomorrow?
If you aren't feeling excited about your meals, or if your kids are complaining about eating chicken again, you may be in a food rut.
It happens easily; between work obligations, social plans, and kids' soccer practices, we tend to fall back on easy-to-prepare staple meals that don't require much thought or effort. And for some of us, cooking doesn't come easily or isn't a pleasure, so we rely on a handful of recipes we can confidently prepare.
While it's wonderful to have a few go-to meals you can rely on in a pinch, it can get old when you rely on the same meals too often. And that lack of excitement about what's on your plate could lead you to reach for additional snacks or sweets to bring more pleasure back to your eating-which can be a problem if you're trying to manage your weight or eat healthier.
We recently asked SparkPeople members if they were stuck in a diet rut, and we were surprised by how many people replied. Member CHOUBROU summed it up this way: ''The food rut is my biggest problem! I fall into it because eating the same go-to meals is convenient and easy. But eventually I get tired of eating the same thing, and that leads me to the temptation of eating out more, eating more frozen/processed meals, etc.''
SparkPeople member KALENSMOMMY5 asked for help: ''One of the main reasons I fall off the healthy eating wagon is that I get caught in a major food rut! As I am a full-time working single mom to a toddler, I have very limited time to cook, so I end up buying the same grab-and-go foods week after week. The unhealthy choices start to look more and more attractive as I get more bored with my standard foods. Help would be much appreciated!''
Lots of folks told us they've hit the wall, cooking-wise. What's more, they shared great advice on how you can break boring food habits, no matter what causes them.
5 Signs You're Stuck in a Food Rut (and What to Do about It)
Sign #1: You Don't Enjoy Cooking
Sign #2: You're On Auto-Pilot
Sign #3: You Always Eat the Same Meals
Sign #4: You're Bored with Brown Bagging
Sign #5: You're Stuck on ''Diet-Safe'' Foods
Learn how to break out of your food rut.