Snacking has been the downfall of many a weight loss program, but it’s usually because the snack is composed of inappropriate ingredients. A healthy, well-timed nibble will keep your energy up and will allow you to eat less at mealtimes.
Eating small amounts throughout the day will actually accelerate weight loss, as long as each nibble is treated as a mini-meal, with balanced protein, carbohydrates and fat. A slice of carrot cake slathered in sugary frosting does not constitute an appropriate snack.
It’s all in the timing
Generally, the long stretch between lunch and dinner is an ideal time for a mini-meal. Also, a healthy nibble an hour before bedtime will prevent nighttime binging.
Do the math
To determine the size that your snack should be, deduct the size of your meals from your total target calorie consumption. If your target is 2000 calories and your breakfast, lunch and dinner only add up to a total of 1600, then there are 400 calories that can be divided between the two snacks.
Aim for satisfaction
To achieve a feeling of fullness, try to make sure that your snack contains both protein and fiber, which digest more slowly. A glass of water consumed at the same time will cause the fiber to swell up, contributing to feelings of satiety.
Don’t forget good fats
While most diet programs advocate restricting calories from fat, new data suggests that complete fat removal is counter productive. Fat slows the absorption of sugar. So don’t eat a rice cake all by itself. Have a little peanut butter with it for better results.
Nutrition is king
If you consume empty calories, your body will send your brain a signal that it’s time to eat again. That’s your body desperately calling out for the vitamins and minerals it needs to function. Adding some raw fruit or vegetable to your snack will provide necessary nutrients and enzymes.
Let’s face it – calorie counting can be a bore. For people with busy schedules, losing track of how many calories have been consumed can be the beginning of the end. To keep your weight-loss program from failing, it might be wise to take advantage of a promotion code for Nutrisystem discount or $25 Medifast coupon and let someone else do the homework for you, counting calories and delivering prepared gourmet meals to your doorstep.
Here are some appropriate choices for your mini-meal:
· An apple and a piece of hard cheese
· Raw carrots and cauliflower dipped in low-fat ranch dressing
· Apple and peanut butter
· Raw broccoli and hummus dip
· A serving of low-fat yogurt
· An orange and a handful of almonds or peanuts
Eat well and live long!