There's nothing wrong with snacking, but frequently it’s mindlessly eating disguised as snacking. Don’t see the difference? Keep reading. We’ve created a list of what snacking is and what it most certainly isn’t.
This is what snacking IS:
- Those in favor of healthy snacking may use snacking to make up to ¼ of their daily caloric intake and eat smaller meals.
- Planned snacks can help control drops in blood glucose between meals.
- A midday, work snack can offer a boost of energy.
- If they’re high in fiber, healthy fats, or protein they can help control your appetite and keep you full longer.
- All of these examples point to how snacking should be strategic.
- When done in moderation, it’s a beneficial habit.
- Mindful snacking improves mood and energy levels.
- Snacks should be 90 percent nutrient-rich and 10 percent of the time, yummy! (We made those numbers up, but you get the point. Snacks are fuel.)
This is What Snacking Is NOT:
Mindless eating: Snacking shouldn’t be done mindlessly. Nuts are healthy but eat a jar full and good for you or not, that snack just became two workouts' worth of calories.
High-Caloric: A snack is not a meal and shouldn’t end up being the same amount of calories as lunch.
Snack-sized sugar-loaded treats. Snack-size does not equal good for you. Read the label. Look at the sugar and sodium content.
Emotional Support Crutch: Eating because you’re bored, anxious, overwhelmed, underpaid, or tired— is not snacking, it’s numbing your worries in a sugar rush.
Snacking Isn’t dessert. You can have your cake and eat it too, but don't call it snacking.
Snacking won't quench your thirst. A lot of the times our brains misinterpret “I’m thirsty” for “feed me.”
A balanced meal has the ability to keep you satisfied until the next one, so snacks won't be missed. The concept of a complete meal doesn't mean 'stuff yourself at the lunch buffet' so you last until dinner. With balanced macros, you won't feel hungry because the food on your plate is high quality, but not high volume. To hold you over until your next meal, sans snacks, a decent meal would consist of:
5-10g of healthy fat
30g of complex carbohydrates
10g of Fiber
If you're used to eating more than the body needs, anything less might feel uncomfortable at first. Don’t give up. Keep pushing through the adjustment period and eventually the cravings will stop. Try Body Complete's Rx Control Appetite Suppressant Capsules help you through the adjustment period.