When we’re overly mindful of our weight and our health we have the tendency take our dietary restrictions quite seriously. Take for instance, snacking. Many of us are accustomed to the 3-meal plan and that is breakfast, lunch and dinner and anything other than those 3 should not be included. Rarely do we give in to snacks believing that if we do we’re only subjecting ourselves to unnecessary weight gain. But on the contrary, studies show that indulging in snacks has its fair share of health benefits. If you don’t believe me, read on to discover why snacking is good for your palate and your health.
First of all snacking prevents you from overeating. If what you’re after is weight loss then you should probably snack more often if you base it on the notion that snacking helps curb the appetite. Doing so essentially stops you from binge eating. According to research, small frequent feeding which in layman’s term is translated to snacking revs up your metabolism allowing your body to burn fats faster. Of course, this would vary because if you snack on high-caloric meals that are packed with starch and sugar your plans of losing weight is bound to fail. The important thing to remember when snacking is to always choose healthy snacks like fruits, almonds, whole-wheat products and the like. It is also worth mentioning that high sugar foods will lead to weight gain.
Secondly, snacking stops you from impulse eating. The problem with the 3-meal plan is that in between we often feel hungry and when we don’t do anything about it we voraciously overeat on the next meal to stave off hunger and the choices we make aren’t always the best. When we’re at the point of starvation we eat whatever we see without gauging whether or not what we put in our mouths are healthy or not. It is for this reason that snacking is stressed to be important because it gives you more control and more power about what you eat.
Lastly, snacking boosts your mood and it makes you more productive. If you haven’t developed the habit of snacking just yet then you’re more likely familiar of how a typical day is going to turn out. This includes an eating pattern involving three heavy meals laden with carbs, fats and sugars. Have you noticed that even on midday you already feel run down and tired? An explanation for this is eating foods high in sugar instantly spikes up your energy and then just as fast it plummets down leaving you worn-out and exhausted. But when you snack on lean proteins, veggies and whole grains, fruits and nuts it slowly builds up your energy and it keeps it on a constant high for the rest of the day. Making you more productive at work and amazingly it also boosts your mood.
These three good reasons are enough to convince you that snacking isn’t that bad after all. If you’ve had experiences in the past that led you to gain weight it was probably because you didn’t choose your snacks well. Just because you are allowed to snack does not mean you can devour anything in sight. The thing about snacking is you need to think about the type of food you eat, the amount, the proportions and the calories involved. When you’re snacking on the right food in acceptable proportions it gives your body a boost of nutrients, it helps control your appetite and most importantly it helps control your weight.
The trick to succeeding in proper and healthy snacking is to plan ahead. Create a snack calendar and list down your snack choices (as well as the proportion) for the whole week so you can prepare for them better. This gives you enough time to go grocery shopping and carefully handpick the items that you need to prepare your snacks. It’s also wise to store them in microwavable containers so when you’re in a hurry you can just grab one from your fridge and heat it up wherever you are. This is especially helpful for individuals who are always on the go and have limited snack options like the ones working in offices and the only food machine available is the fat-boosting vending machine that sells nothing but chips and sodas.