Snacking is something we all like to do. In fact, it has become more of a pastime for many of us. We eat when we are bored, or maybe when we need an excuse to catch up with someone. But we don’t realize that those small bites could easily snowball, adding a couple of inches to our waistline.
So, what one can do to enjoy snacking without gaining extra pounds? Making right choices regarding what you eat, when you eat, and how much you eat can help you maintain healthy weight.
Here are a few strategies that you can use to snack smarter and look and feel fitter.
1. Choose Wisely
When it comes to snacking, the old adage—out of sight, out of mind—holds true. Keep fruits, vegetables, and other healthy options in plain sight in your kitchen. If you are feeling really hungry, opt for mini meals, such as a cup of soup or a bowl of cereal. Also, try to cut down on sugary beverages as they contain a significant number of calories. Substitute them for healthier options, such as vegetable juice, herbal tea, or sparkling water with a slice of orange, lime, or lemon.
2. Manage Your Portions
A study conducted by Cornell University compared the hunger levels of two groups after snacking. One group was provided with bigger, 1,370-calorie portions of chips, apple pie, and chocolate, while the other was offered smaller portions of the same foods. The research found that the hunger level of participants from both groups was same post-snacking. So, if you are in need of a snack, begin with smaller portions. Eating with your non-dominant hand can also help you eat less.
3. Eat Fat-Burning Snacks
The primary principle of smart snacking is to select foods that offer you more nutrients and fewer calories. According to Susan Bowerman, who is serving as an Assistant Director at the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition, snacks that contain 200 or fewer calories, 10 grams of protein, and around 5 grams of fiber are the healthiest options as they can help you feel energetic and full for at least a couple of hours. Examples of such snacks include:
- An apple and a cup of skim milk
- 15 asparagus spears (can be cooked or raw) and one hard-boiled egg
- Half of an avocado filled with 2 ounces of 1% cottage cheese
- One cup of boiled soybeans
- Chicken pita sandwich (half)
Another smart way to enjoy snacking without gaining weight is to select foods that are appropriate for your individual nutritional needs. Since every one of us metabolizes different foods at different rates, it is important to establish a personalized, genetically adequate dietary plan that has been designed for you precise needs.
Pathway FIT is a unique nutrigenomic test that evaluates 80 different genetic markers to provide you with a detailed nutritional profile that you can use to create a more effective weight management plan for yourself. To learn more about it, please email at email@example.com.