Is snacking actually good for us? Or is it just extra calories that we don’t need? Like many dietary areas, snacking is one of those things that leave us confused. Should I be snacking? Are frequent small meals better for me than three big meals? If I snack does that mean I am consuming extra calories that I don’t need?
There is nothing wrong with snacking if you are trying to lose weight. In fact a smart day’s eating will include three meals plus a snack or two. But not all snacks are created equal.
HOW to snack.
Snacking is an important part of our diet and if done right can mean that we should avoid over eating when it comes to eating breakfast, lunch and dinner. Snacking is recommended once or twice a day. Snacking can also play a good role in our metabolism, as going too long without food can have a reverse effect on our body. It will start storing food as fat.
We recommend preparing your snacks in the morning or the night before you leave for work for the day. That way you know that you are opting for healthy nutritious snacks.
WHEN to snack
It is important to be in tune with your body and listen to signals for hunger. There is no right or wrong time to snack and snacking should occur when someone is truly hungry. Often feelings of boredom and stress can be confused for feelings of hunger. It is important to not give into these feelings as it can lead to over eating.
Also, thirst is often mistaken for hunger, so if you are feeling hungry reach for a bottle of H2o first and see if that does the job instead.
WHAT to snack on
It is important that what you are snacking on has beneficial nutrients for your body and isn’t just empty calories. A lot of snacks contain refined carbohydrates and all these snacks do is cause a downward energy spiral, which ends up making us even hungrier. We recommend having a snack rich in protein. Unlike carbohydrate rich snacks, such as biscuits and chips, protein snacks will have you feeling fuller for longer after eating them. They will tide you over until your next meal too!
We enjoy snacks such as a handful of almonds or raw mixed nuts (no peanuts), a tin of tuna, piece of fruit (no more than two per day), air popped popcorn, rice cake with cottage cheese and tomato, carrot sticks with hummus.. Our favourite snack is our Lady Bars. They come in 5 delicious flavours and are the perfect protein rich, guilt free snack on the run.