We all snack between meals whether we are hungry, bored or just for habit, but are we snacking correctly?
There is nothing wrong with a bite between meals, in fact snacking may be the missing ingredient that will help you reach your weight loss goals! How you ask?
Well snacking doesn’t serve to replace a meal but by eating little and often and the right things this will satisfy you and keep you feeling fuller for longer. By eating at regular intervals your blood sugar levels (and therefore your energy levels) remain stable. Eating every few hours (especially fruits and veggies) can also help add extra nutrition that might be missing from other meals.
When snacking you should avoid items like chocolate and crisps, and shouldn’t be consuming enough calories to constitute a meal. Instead, steer towards foods that will satisfy you and keep you feeling fuller for longer. Fruits and vegetables are always a safe bet because they are low in fat and calories, yogurt and fruit smoothies also make great snacks during the day. Combining lean protein, some healthy fat and complex carbohydrates will help you on your way to the body you desire and help beat those bad cravings.
Munching between meals can actually reduce your overall caloric intake by curbing overeating at your next meal. By controlling later binging, snacking can help you stay on track. You can actually use this to your advantage, for example if you know you are going out for a meal with friends, by eating a healthy snack before you head out may stop you ordering a starter or a side dish.
We must remember though, Snacking Isn’t Grazing…
Mindless eating is often the downfall of many snackers. You may start with only a handful of your favourite crisps as a treat, only to finish the entire bag without even thinking about it. (Obviously, this example isn’t the healthy snacking that can help you reach your weight loss goals).
Some tips to avoid grazing:
Fill a small plate with your snack, and leave the kitchen. When your plate is empty, snack time is over.
Never bring the entire container with you in front of the television or computer. Enjoy your snack without distraction and you won’t be tempted to reach for more.
Limit yourself to a single serving.
Plan out your snacks just like you would a meal. Is one cookie worth the calorie cost, when you could eat a plate of fresh fruit instead?
To conclude my nutritional recipes and tips check out a couple of great snack ideas below.
FRUIT AND VEGETABLES
Fruit and veg are nature’s wonderful medicines packed with vitamins and minerals that help the body stay fit and healthy! They are low in calories and fat and are a source of simple sugars, fibre, and vitamins, which are essential for optimizing our health. Fruit and veg will boost you instantly and is something which can quench your thirst and satisfy your hunger at the same time. They are also good on the go if there isn’t time for a meal.
NUTS AND SEEDS
Nuts are rich in energy, nutrients and protein and packed with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and omega-3 fatty acids. Nuts and seeds can be eaten as they are and are handy on the go. They can be consumed with almost anything and are particularly good with salads and mixed with yoghurt. Just munch a handful of nuts a day and you will be doing more than good to keep yourself healthy and stay fit.
Rice cakes are great for people on healthy eating plans. They are very low in calories and don't contain any fat and sodium. They can be topped with a variety of ingredients depending on the snack you want to achieve. Some examples are almond butter, hummus and banana.
Remember don’t sabotage your diet with unhealthy nibbles throughout the day; stick to nourishing foods whenever possible. If you know you have a weakness for junk food, do yourself a favour and don’t purchase these items when shopping, then you won’t have to fight the temptation when hunger pangs hit.
Any questions you know where I am.
See you soon,