Healthy Snacking

By November 5, 2014 March 7th, 2019 Nutrition

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Want to take control of your weight once and for all? Eat more – more often that is.

Eating more often does not necessarily mean eating more calories, but spreading out those calories into more portioned meals and snacks.

Your food intake should be timed every few hours to fuel your body consistently throughout the day, rather than eating once you actually feel hungry. Now of course I’m talking about nutritious foods. Snacking on sugary foods that hold no nutritional value will do nothing more than starve your body of nutrients while enhancing fat storage.

Eating balanced snacks between meals will help control your blood sugar – something that your body is constantly trying to stabilize so you can perform efficiently.

If your blood sugar drops too low, you’ll feel a crash in energy levels, you may become moody, shaky, or irritable, and you’re more likely to reach for something sugary or unhealthy. Your ability to make sound food choices at this point becomes more difficult.

Spiking your blood sugar by eating too many carbohydrates in one sitting, especially after letting your blood sugar drop too low, may have you feeling drowsy or sleepy shortly after the meal. This is due to large fluctuations in blood sugar which are worsened by eating too much in one sitting or having allowed too much time since your last meal. This abuse to your insulin response over and over again can lead to chronic blood sugar issues and possibly type 2 diabetes. Over time this will lead to more fat storage and an increase in weight.

So now that you know the importance of consistent eating, what types of foods should you eat?

A balanced meal or snack not only consists of nutritious foods, but it also needs to include all 3 macronutrients – protein, carbohydrates, and fat. A balance of these three nutrients ensures that the body is getting a balanced supply of calories. A snack with too many carbs and not enough protein and fat will spike your blood sugar temporarily, only to give you that crash as your blood sugar drops, resulting in low energy and a craving for more sugar. So even though a banana is healthy, just eat half and pair it with a protein/fat food, such as a hard-boiled egg, to balance out your snack.

Some other healthy snack options include:

–          Protein Smoothie – 1 scoop whey or egg protein powder, 1 cup frozen fruit, 1 Tbsp natural almond butter, 8 oz  water 

–          1 hard-boiled egg and ½ cup blueberries

–          Green salad with 4 oz chicken, 1/4 avocado, and sliced apple

–          6 oz Greek yogurt, ½ cup raspberries, and 1 oz crushed walnuts

–          1 packet plain oatmeal, 1 scoop protein powder, and 1 Tbsp peanut butter

–          Large leaf of lettuce, 4 oz shaved turkey, 1/4 avocado, mustard

–          ½ cup cottage cheese, 1 sliced peach, and 1 Tbsp flax meal

So support your health and energy levels by eating the right foods and eating them often.