7 Tips to Deal with Snacking

When it comes to snacking, we all have our little habits. Some have a sweet tooth, others prefer salty snacks. Some bring snacks to bed, others like to snack while driving. These habits are often ingrained into our routines.  Yet, we can outsmart them. Follow some of the following suggestions:

  1. If you’ve just eaten your meal and still feel peckish, distract yourself for 15 to 20 minutes. It takes some time for the brain to receive the signal that we are full. Hence, if you ate too fast, not enough time has passed for the signal to arrive yet. If you give it some time, the urge to snack might pass.
  2. Chew a gum instead of reaching for a snack.
  3. Put snacks in a walkable distance. Don’t have them handy. If you can’t see your snacks, you are less likely to habitually reach for them.
  4. Make snacks look less attractive. For example, if you have some leftovers from a birthday party, wrap the cake in an aluminium foil so you can’t see it. In contrast, your healthy snacks, such as slices of fresh fruits, should be wrapped in a clear foil so you can easily see them.
  5. If you buy things in bulk and come home with super-size packages, re-pack them. If we are given a bigger pack, we are going to eat it. However, if we are given a smaller package, we are going to eat that too, but, it will be half the calories. It’s as simple as that. And, we will still be happy.
  6. Don’t eat out of the package. Bringing a whole tub of Ben & Jerry’s in front of the TV is a bad idea. Serve yourself a portion and eat only your ration.
  7. Make sure you get enough sleep. We can often feel peckish when we are tired. Lack of sleep and stress have been linked to hormonal imbalances that can influence weight gain. Sleep deprivation has also been linked to obesity. So, get your dose of deep sleep and ensure the bedroom is an environment that facilitates good sleep (think temperature, light, noise). Also, try to go to bed at roughly the same time and build a good sleeping routine. This will help you balance out your hormones.

A little note Don’t deprive yourself of comfort foods entirely. Keep them, but just eat them in smaller amounts.

Published by Manuel Attard

Manuel Attard Registered Dietitian & Nutritionist

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