One of my biggest struggles during the day is healthy snacking. I love to have a snack every now and then, but, too often, it’s not a healthy snack. It’s usually candy or something salty, like chips.
I’ve been trying to be more conscientious about my snacking, since I want to keep up with the positive health progress I’ve made over the past couple of years. In fact, the last thing I really have to worry about in my efforts to reform my health is the snacking.
In an effort to boost my healthy snacks during the day, I am employing the following strategies:
1. Portion Control
First of all, it’s important to implement portion control, especially if you a choose a less-than-healthy snack. While some delicious treats, like dark chocolate, are healthier than others, you still can’t let the portions get out of control. Take a look at the serving size, and adhere to it. Get used to portion control, and that will help you cut down on the unhealthy calories you take in while snacking.
2. Keep the Healthy Stuff Visible
One of my issues is that the healthy stuff is rarely visible. Out of sight, out of mind. Instead, I’ve started keeping the healthy stuff visible. I set grapes out on the table in the morning, or I put a bowl of apples, oranges, and pears out where I can see them. The bananas are set out as well. That way, when I wander into the kitchen for a snack, I see the healthy stuff, and it’s easy to grab.
3. Prepare Some Snacks Early
I’ve heard that cutting produce can result in the rapid depletion of nutrients. So, while you might not want to cut up carrots and peppers for consumption later in the week, it doesn’t preclude you from preparing them first thing. I often prepare some snacks in the morning, and then they are ready for easy munching throughout the day.
You can also get around the cutting thing by purchasing baby carrots, which are easy to eat, along with produce like sugar snap peas, grapes, and cherries. These are small and snackable, and don’t require a lot of preparation.
4. Take Care of Yourself
One of my issues is self-control. I often have a harder time staying away from the unhealthy treats when I’m tired, hungry, or thirsty. I also find that I eat healthier if I’ve exercised during the day. Feeling well helps your discipline. If I start my day with yoga after a good night’s sleep, I’m far more likely to eat healthy during the day. Take care of yourself in general, drink plenty of water throughout the day, and make sure to get in a little exercise, and healthy snacking will become second nature.
5. Stay Busy
I often find myself reaching for the chips or the candy when I’m “bored.” If you don’t have anything constructive to do, it’s easy to wander into the kitchen and rummage through the cupboards for something to eat. While we’ve tried to get rid of most of the unhealthy snacks at our house to limit the potential for binging, there are still some unhealthy items. Staying occupied is a good way to keep me out of the kitchen, looking for trouble.
As long as I have something to do, whether it’s work, self-improvement, or an activity with my son, it’s easier for me to avoid eating because I’m bored.
If you can add healthy snacking to your list of food practices, you will be more likely to live better and feel better.
What are your tips for healthy snacking during the day?