There is no denying that everyone at one time or another has had a snack attack. Americans love to snack almost as much as they want to lose weight, but snacking habits are adding too many calories and too few nutrients to our diets.
Views on snacking differ. Some feel that snacking is bad and that eating between meals leads to weight gain. Others believe that eating many small meals and snacks throughout the day is healthy for maintaining energy levels and optimal weight.
When snacking is done “right” it keeps your energy levels up and gives you more opportunities to get in all your nutritional needs. Pay attention to your body. Listen. Observe. How do you feel before, during and after the snack? Some will work better for you than others. You are unique and your body will inform you.
The key to incorporating snacks into your weight-loss plan is to keep moderation and balance in mind.
Alleviate Snack Attack Guilt
Try to understand why you are snacking. Is your daily diet missing nutrition or are you eating too little at meals.
You might be snacking to soothe jangled nerves when you are emotional, or to entertain yourself when you are bored. Whatever your reason, acknowledge it and start thinking about how to create a life that is deeply nourishing and truly satisfying.
Many convenient snack foods are highly processed and full of chemicals, additives, damaging fats and refined sugars. When a snack attack hits you, try foods that are filling and satisfying, but also nutritious.
Figuring out why you are snacking will help alleviate the guilt.
Choose Healthy Snacks
- Snack on things that don’t come in a plastic wrapper or a box, like fresh fruit, leftover vegetables or rice cakes with almond butter and fruit spread.
- Make your own signature trail mix or kale chips with hummus.
- Grab a small handful of nuts
Healthy Snack Upgrades
- If you are craving something crunchy, upgrade from potato chips to raw carrots, apples or whole grain crackers.
- If you are craving a candy bar, upgrade to a handful of nuts and dried fruit.
- Instead of a cup of coffee, upgrade to teeccino (carob, barley, chicory, dates, orange peel, almonds, and figs. All organic and delicious according to my husband)!
- Instead of ice cream, upgrade to applesauce with cinnamon or bananas and almond milk in the blender.
Upgraded snacks are high in nutrition and give you a greater sense of satiety and satisfaction; you won’t feel physically or psychologically deprived, and you’ll have plenty of energy to sustain your activities for hours.
Snacking is enjoyable and there is a wide variety of healthful goodies for whatever you’re craving be it sweet, crunchy, salty, creamy or spicy.
Dive in, be creative and enjoy your snack attack!
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