No matter how hard you try to eat healthy, sometimes you just feel like having a snack; i.e. for energy, the setting makes you want to eat something, for emotional reasons or special occasions. Keep an eye on the following and make sure that your snacks are also healthy.
1. Keep your blood sugar level stable
Throughout our 12-week program, we share that one of the most important things for your health and weight is to maintain a stable blood sugar level. To reiterate: stable blood sugar ensures that there is less fat storage in the body and that you have a stable, calm form of energy throughout the day. Therefore, make sure that if you want to snack, you pay attention to when you eat and what the effect is on your blood sugar level. It makes a difference whether you have a snack in between, with or after your meal. Too many eating moments during the day will fluctuate your blood sugar. If you are thinking about having chocolate as a snack, for example, milk chocolate contains much more sugar than dark chocolate and quickly makes you crave more. True pure cholocate, on the other hand, will satiate your craving for sweetness. Home-roasted fresh nuts provide you with valuable nutrients, unlike chips. If you would like some chips, you can choose to roast fresh vegetables (e.g. in an air fryer).
2. Limit processed snacks
Processed foods are often stripped of all kinds of important nutrients and contain many additives that are harmful to you and make you eat more of a certain food. For example, GSM (glutamate), a very strong seasoning on chips, ensures that you do not eat a few chips, but preferably the entire bag or box! The digestion and processing of these snacks costs your body precious nutrients so that you eventually become more devoid of the right nutrients. Processed foods are often composed of a certain ratio of fat, salt, and sugar to make you eat more of them. It can have an addictive effect on you.
3. Prepare your portion size
Certain nutrients in processed foods make you eat more of a particular product than you would like to, making it difficult to stop. Make sure you determine in advance how much you want to take and put your snack(s) in a nice bowl that will satisfy your eyes as well. Store the bag or box in a place where you have to make an effort to take more of it (e.g. in the basement). Make an appointment with yourself that this will be all, go for a walk or do something else to distract your mind and to get over your craving.
4. Tailor your snacks to your needs and goals
Make sure that your snacks contribute to reaching your health goals:
- Lose weight? Then take a snack with fiber to still your hunger.
- Get more nutrients? Go for veggies with some delicious dips.
- Get extra protein? Reach for a homemade protein bar.
- Support your sleep? Try tryptophan-rich recipes.
- Just want something sweet? Take some sweets from nature like fruits or dadels.
- A savory craving? Try a homemade broth.
5. Holidays and festivities:
Summertime BBQ’s, spring flings, birthdays and holidays; festivities and holidays are always the most difficult times to maintain your healthy eating habits. By planning well in advance and mapping out moments of weakness, you can stick to your goals more easily.
6. The 80-20 rule
Last but not least: remember the 80-20 rule. If you eat well 80% of the time, you have built some credits and you can cut yourself some slack; i.e. the remaining 20%. Don’t stress out over this or become too rigid, as it will only have a counter effect; i.e. stress will augment your cortisol levels and we don’t want that. Take really good care of yourself with all our beautiful recipes and enjoy your health journey.