Limit access: a must to protect your dishes
Why not try restricting access to the kitchen and dining area? Be sure to close doors and windows, and don't leave food within reach of those clever little paws. Cover your dishes while waiting to serve them, avoid sharing the contents of your plates, clear them away as soon as the meal is over, and don't delay in washing the dishes. Don't forget to put your leftovers in the refrigerator.
If your cat climbs on the table or countertop, don't put him down yourself, instead invite him down on his own and reward him with a pat or a treat. This will take persistence, as our cat friends are notoriously tenacious!
Essential precautions to take
It is strongly discouraged to use a sprayer to keep your cat away from food. This type of action is not constructive and may cause surprise, fear, annoyance, or even shift your pet's frustration to something else. Instead, place foil or citrus around your food to protect it.
Finally, a key prevention tip: make sure your cat is eating enough and that his diet is appetizing enough for him. If you feel overwhelmed by the situation, don't hesitate to consult your veterinarian or a feline behaviorist. They will be able to guide you and suggest solutions adapted to your situation.