Healthy snacking

Snacking between meals can contribute to maintaining a healthy balanced diet, as long as those snacks are healthy; so it’s equally as important when considering snacks to make sure we also think about the right overall energy intake as part of a varied diet.

Although there isn’t much research out there on the effects of what we eat between meals, particularly when we snack, how we snack and why we snack; it’s important we think about the snacks we consume daily. Sadly, snacks can include saturated fats, sugar and salt all of which we need to limit.

We can replace snacks high in saturated fat, sugar and salt with snacks that are healthier like plain popcorn and unsalted nuts. It’s far easier to leave unhealthier snacks in the grocery store than it is to buy them and wean ourselves off them.

The whole point to eating regular meals is that if we are feeling slightly peckish in between meals, we can reach for a snack without making it unhealthy, as we are less hungry. Snacking should never replace three regular meals a day, but having a snack allows us to maintain blood sugar between meals, as long as we eat healthy snacks.

When it comes to snacking, to help maintain a healthy balanced diet it’s important we consider portion size, particularly if what we’re eating is high in saturated fat, sugar and salt. For example, reduce chocolate to two square portions, crisps only eat a handful, or eat two biscuits. Reducing the amount we consume when snacking, will help us maintain a healthy balanced diet.

It’s easy to reach for the biscuit tin. but it’s always important to make sure we’re not eating out of boredom, or we’ve got ourselves into a bad habit of eating in response to our emotions. Sadly, the wrong snacks can add to weight gain, particularly if we’re not eating regular meals or looking at the bigger picture of what we’re dealing with emotionally.

If we plan-ahead with our meals, we’re more likely to reach for healthier snacks when we do snack. Lastly if we go shopping after we’ve eaten; we’ll pay for less unhealthy snacks at the check- out.

13 Sep, 2017

4 thoughts on “Healthy snacking

  1. I remember reading that you shouldn’t eat 3 large meals a day but it’s better to eat 5 or 6 small ones by snacking in between.

    You can find healthy snacks but they tend to be expensive as everyone jumps on the organic muesli bar band wagon. I bought a date bar today and it cost £1.99 which is a crazy amount of money for a single snack bar.

    You also have to check sugar levels too as I’ve noticed so called fruit bars can be very high in sugar. I try to reach for an apple if I am peckish.

    As much as I like biscuits I don’t miss them if they aren’t in the house so I just don’t buy them; job done!

  2. I think the experts mean don’t skip meals. Breakfast, lunch and dinner, even if lunch is a snack. Sadly, many of us miss breakfast, don’t eat lunch and then skip straight to dinner.

    I used to know someone who did that and got ill. For those like me who struggle with digestion issues, eating smaller meals, but more frequent is the way to go.

    Regardless of our eating habits, it’s important that we balance our blood sugar, so that we’re less likely to reach for the unhealthy snacks. Yes you’re right about the sugar content in snacks. Not only in snacks but other foods too.

  3. Protein snacks, like nuts, are good because you only need a few of them to fill you up until your next meal and they are full of good fats!

  4. Thanks Claud. Yes you’re right and I agree. The hard part is stopping ourselves from eating too many, because they taste so good.

    Although as you say they are good fats, they are slightly fattening!

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