If you’re like us, it’s hard to resist mindlessly snacking throughout the day. Eating a healthy snack throughout the day prevents you from overeating during meals. In this blog post, we cover tips on how to fight back against the munchies. Our suggestions are broken down into two categories: weight loss and nutrition.
Snacking for Weight Loss
It seems silly to add snacks to your diet if you’re trying to lose weight, but they can end up keeping you on track. When you take long breaks between eating meals, your blood sugar levels drop. Low blood sugar may make you feel extremely hungry, weak, and dizzy. You don’t have to be diabetic to feel this way. Raising your blood sugar levels throughout the day helps you make healthier decisions because you won’t feel starving.
- Avoid grazing - Snacking and grazing are two different things. We all know the feeling of having accessible office snacks tempting us to graze throughout the day. Pick a time to sit down and finish your bite. Eating one almond every 5 minutes is not going to fill you up. In fact, it may make you even more hungry.
- Keep sodium low - The bag of chips staring at you across the room is not going to help you feel full or give you the nutrients you need. Try keeping sodium levels below 170 mg per snack. Turn to fruits, veggies, and yogurt.
- Eat every 3-4 hours - Get yourself in the habit of eating on a schedule. Eating every 3-4 hours allows you to remain productive throughout the day by providing your body with a constant stream of nutrients. Don’t wait until you’re hungry to start eating. Otherwise, you may eat more than you need.
- Take your time - We mentioned above to eat your snack in one sitting, but this doesn’t mean you have to scarf it down like a wild animal. It’s important to drink water while you’re eating because it is easier to tell when you’re full.
- Plan your snacks - The easiest way to start snacking unhealthily is by relying on vending machines. Make sure you pack healthy snacks like veggies and hummus with you before you head into work. If you know your lunch is high in carbs, pack a low carb snack. Taking a small amount of time out of your day to plan your diet keeps you on track to achieve your weight loss goals!
Getting all the nutrients you need can be difficult in only three meals. If you know you lack a specific piece of your diet, incorporate it into a snack!
- Mix it up - Think of your snack as a charcuterie board (minus the wine if you’re at work). Mix low-fat cheeses, unsalted nuts, and whole grain crackers. You can even add fresh fruits and veggies with hummus to your snack attack.
- Don’t forget grains - Whole grains help you feel full and give you a boost of fiber. Try whole grain toast with jam or oatmeal with fresh fruit.
- Are you really hungry? - Ask yourself this question before you start scoping out snacks. Sometimes hunger is just thirst in disguise. Staying hydrated throughout the day is another way to keep up energy levels.
- Portion control - Before you run out of the house, measure out your serving size. It’s easy to eat giant snacks when you bring more than you need. Even if it looks healthy, make sure you’re eating the correct amount.
- Check the nutrition label - Trans fats are still a thing! Even if your snack is prepackaged and looks healthy, it may not be. Just because a snack is high in calories doesn’t mean it will fill you up as much as a low-calorie snack as fresh fruit will.