Weight Loss NHS
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Mealtimes around odd work hours

Most of the week I work 9-5 type hours but on Wednesdays I work 12 til 8pm. I find I need a very small breakfast early so I've been having just a little natural yoghurt and then I have to eat before I start because my next break is after 3pm so I'm having a sort of brunch (today that was a cherry tomato omelette with salad leaves.) By 3pm I'm quite hungry so I'm having lunch there (usually soup) but I was hungry again at my 5.30pm break today so I ate a few nuts and seeds. When I got home I still felt as if I needed something so I had just a little cheese, cucumber and tomatoes. I need to structure Wednesdays better because today I feel as if I've eaten about five meals, but there isn't time for anything more than snacking or pre-prepared homemade soups. Any suggestions?

5 Replies

Hi Divided,

I sometimes have a stir-fry, which takes hardly any time to cook - it is also very filling and I usually have a chicken or prawn stir-fry, so they are tasty. You could also perhaps spend some time cooking things like curry or chilli meals, and freezing them into portions so you can just heat them up at your mealtimes?

Good luck and hope you have a good week.

Lowcal :-)


I'm assuming you've only got access to a microwave at work? If you want something filling and pre-packed then have you tried Innocent Veg Pots? innocentdrinks.co.uk/things... They are reasonably nutrious for processed food and quite filling, I don't have the need to eat them myself at the moment but when I did my personal favourite was the Mexican Sweet Potato Chilli.

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Hi Divided.

I don't think it really matters that much when you eat as long as you stick to your diet plan (e.g. keep below the calorie goal). There is nothing fundamentally wrong with having a early lunch, then splitting the rest into a few smaller meals if that is what works best time wise. If you are finding that you are not meeting your diet plan that day, then perhaps try to change some of the snacks/meals. Could you take in food with you that you plan to have as a snack in your breaks?

I just plan to have my meals at a time that works for me rather than fitting into standard times. On week days I have breakfast and lunch at more or less the normal times, but I get home from work about 7pm and then go to the gym or out for a run, so it is often after 9pm on a week night when I eat dinner. Sometimes I have a snack before the gym if I'm feeling really hungry - like a handful of nuts and/or some dried fruit. Of course I'm not cooking for anyone else, so I don't have to worry about annoying others with odd times for meals :)


Thanks for the suggestion OlsBean, but I'm zero sugar so processed snacks are definitely out. I've been making large batches of soup on my day off and freezing them so far. Looks like I should keep doing that.

When I started my diet I ruled out stirfries just because my thyroid-friendly diet recommended no raw or under-cooked cruciferous veggies. I've since given that up as too restrictive but had forgotten stirfries are back on the menu. Thanks LowCal.

Albionjen, since I've been dieting I've kept a little tub of cashews and seeds in my handbag. Cashew nuts are instantly satisfying and will keep you going for hours but you have to remember they are very calorific and later meals should be reduced slightly as a result. I sometimes forget! I'm trying to avoid snacking altogether, hence my need to formalise my Weds meals, but I suppose if I keep them as small snack meals such as the cheese, cucumber and tomatoes, I can't go too far wrong.


Hi Divided

I think it's helpful - and I certainly found it helpful - to try to get into an eating routine..

Mine was Meal-Snack-Meal-Snack-Meal-Snack. And basically the notion was to not go without any food for longer than about 4 hours.

The meals weren't huge, they were sensible-sized, and the snacks were often just something to "skate the hunger off" until the next meal.

But getting into an eating routine helped me - even if I had to rather adapt it some days depending upon what I was doing.

Good luck with your weight loss journey.


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