Doing the same things and expecting different results does not work – is it time for change in the way you approach snacking?
I am a self-confessed late hour snacker with very dangerous sweet tooth requiring recent dental treatment.
This is unhealthy practice I find is okay in the summer months when I’ve been hamming into chocolate, crisps, cakes, biscuits, ice-lollies &c., because work and recreational activities have a habit of burning up such intake. Unfortunately this cannot be said for the winter months with the dark hours and inclement weather whereby there is a reluctance to get motivated from my couch potato impersonation. This leads to me piling on the pounds and then trying to lose such surplus by signing up to the gym in advance of spring arriving.
It’s easy to say that this is just down to a lack of discipline or energy, and I should refrain from having so many snacks in-between meals. Especially when after breakfast, dessert or a snack is my favourite meal of the day.
After self-analysis, I reached a conclusion that I was not lifestyle choices wises helping myself to stick to in-between meals healthy and balanced diet. This was exacerbated by very poor weekly shopping selections, which was the catalyst for eating the wrong things. After doing my online research, I decided that in addition to rehydrating bottles of water, the following five snacks were far better available to me than a nice selection of huge calorie control intake of cream cakes, for example.
1.Fresh Fruit and Veggies
I now have a wide selection of fruit and veg as opposed to sweet things in my cupboards at home. This consists of apples, pairs, plums, grapes, melon, strawberries, bananas, and I also now purchase snack bags of garden peas, blueberries and carrots, for example. If I’m craving a snack, fruits and veggies make amazing healthy snacks when I’m feeling peckish.
Another addition to the weekly shopping was a wider range of breakfast cereal. There are such a variety of cereals but it is always best to check out sugar and saccharin content before you buy or you are defeating the purpose of eating more healthily.
The benefits of eating nutritious cereal not only just for breakfast go beyond staying full and avoiding obesity. Fibre-rich cereals, such as bran and oatmeal, might encourage good gastrointestinal health and decrease the risks of high cholesterol, high blood pressure and the likes of colon cancer.
For a quick snack, you may be better off eating a banana or an apple, but a healthy bar can be a nutritional alternative.
If you are shopping for health bars remember to look for a bar that’s less than 5 grams of fat and aim for 3-5 grams of fibre. If you’re closely watching your weight, check the calories listed on the health bar label. If you eat several health bars per day, make sure you’re not biting off more vitamins and minerals than you should chew.
4.Nuts & Raisins
Nuts and Raisins are high-energy-density foods. They have small serving sizes but high calorie counts. That means they’re not the best choice for weight loss. However, since they are rich in nutrients like fibre and healthy fats, they are healthy choices in moderation. To give me another healthy option I purchased snack bag sizes of nuts and raisins as an alternative snack, from the likes of fruit and health bars, but I consume this in moderation to avoid my snack going into calorie-controlled overload.
5.Plain Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt has gone from a not easily understood item in the dairy aisle of your local supermarket to a very popular addition to many peoples’ diet.
It’s processed by straining away the liquid. The outcome is tasty thick Greek-style yogurts, which contain twice as much protein as standard versions, supplying approximately 23 grams of protein in each normal serving. Consumers also benefit from stomach-friendly probiotic bacteria and bone-building calcium.
I have found this to be one of my most successful additions to my diet and I tend to vary this snack. I tend to either eat this plain or at times I shall add some dried fruit, and I have found this to be very gut-friendly.
In summary, I had to improvise and find healthy snacks that didn’t require much thought or prep. Keeping ready-to-eat, fresh and nutritious foods near to hand can help you adhere to a healthy diet because you can reach for them instead of unhealthy but tasty alternatives when you’re hungry.