- To snack or not to snack?
- 6 small meals or 3 regular sized meals?
- Do I have to snack?
- Will I lose weight if I snack?
1) Depends if you are hungry or not. 2) Personal preference, not every meal plan works for everyone nor does 1 meal plan work everyday. 3) Are you hungry between meals? 4) Depends on the remainder of your daily calories.
Snack when you’re a little hungry instead of waiting until the next meal when you’re ravenous. This way, you’ll be less likely to overeat at mealtimes.
Add a small snack wherever you have the largest gap between meals, either between breakfast and lunch or lunch and dinner. Most of my clients have lunch between noon and 1 p.m. and dinner not until around 7 p.m. That’s too long to go without food. Neglect snacking and you’re more likely to hit the kitchen for snacks just prior to dinner (leading to a few hundred unnecessary calories), or help yourself to one too many servings of mashed potatoes.
- A small snack means just that. Small—100 to 200 calories.
- So what makes a great 100 to 200 calorie snack? A piece of fruit. Baby carrots dipped in one tablespoon of peanut butter. A small cup of soup. 2 to 3 slices of fresh roast turkey on 2 to 3 whole grain crackers. You get the idea.
- Include your snack as part of your daily calorie requirements, not an add-on.
Where to stash your snacks
We all know that when hunger hits, any food in sight will do. Don’t set yourself up for failure: bring your snacks along be it in the car, at your office, or at the mall. You will no doubt make better nutritional choices than do the companies who stock vending machines.
- If you make and bring your lunch to work, save a fruit cup or a low fat yogurt to snack on later in the day.
- If you plan to be out for the afternoon, pack a snack in a small cooler (low-fat yogurt or cottage cheese) or pack a baggie with non-perishables (homemade trail-mix- nuts, dried fruit, and a whole grain low-sugar cereal).
- Right After a grocery store run, wash and cut up any fruits and veggies you have for snacking. Do this one once or twice a week so you have ready to eat healthy snacks at your fingertips.
- If you have a sweet tooth, mix diced fresh fruit with vanilla yogurt sprinkled with cinnamon.
- Always watch your portion sizes. A snack should be just that—a snack. Remember a snack is about 100 to 200 calories.