What are the benefits of healthy snacking?
A snack is any food item that you eat between the main meals. Most people snack at least once or twice a day, though their reasons may vary. The most common scenario in which people urge to reach for candy, chips or cookies, is when their stomach starts growling between meals. Snacking is often associated with weight gain and other health problems. However, snacks are not that bad. Snacking can also be beneficial for your health if done right. With healthy snacks like biltong, turkey sticks, canned salmon, you can increase your nutrient intake, help the body recover from exercise, sustain energy levels, fuel your body and brain and so forth.
Moreover, you will be surprised to learn that you get an average of 25 per cent of your calories from snacks. With snacking providing so many calories in a day, don’t you think choosing healthy options is crucial? Read on to find out better about the benefits of eating healthy snacks.
Benefits of healthy snacking
Snacking help prevent overeating
When you are consuming snacks between your main meals, it helps you from getting overly hungry and then overeating at your next meal. So whenever you feel hungry, don’t try to resist your urge to snack. Instead, eat a small portion of healthy snacks to calm your hunger. Nutritionists often recommend eating small meals every 3-5 hours during active times of the day. This way, you will match your intake with your output and achieve your weight-control goals.
Snacking keeps your blood sugar level steady.
You must be knowing that blood sugar levels dip two to four hours after you have taken your meal. Therefore, eating small, frequent meals will keep your metabolism revved up and steady your blood sugar level. Medical professionals recommend such a diet for diabetics, but this is also beneficial for people without diabetes. Over that, large spikes and dips in blood sugar can throw your body into famine mode that ultimately leads to type 2 diabetes, heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure.
Snacking boosts your energy, mood and brain.
Food works as fuel to living bodies! Nutrient-poor snacks are like fuel that give you a quick jolt of energy but leave you hungry, sleepy and cranky. On the other hand, healthy snacks are like slow-burning fuel that keeps you going all day long. Including protein-laden foods like meat, egg, cheese, fish, and tofu helps increase the production of neurotransmitters that regulate concentration, alertness and lift your mood.
Snacking helps improve your nutrient intake.
As long as you take nutritious snacks, you don’t need to worry about your nutrient intake. Your everyday nutrient needs will be catered successfully mere with the snacks. Although it’s OK to have unhealthy snacks every once in a while, most of your snacks should be nutrient-rich. Make sure the food you choose as snacks are nutrient-dense, high-protein, omega-3, fibre and healthy carbs.
Snacking keeps your heart healthy.
If you are dealing with heart diseases and want to keep your blood pressure in control, go for snacks like biltong and tuna. These snacks are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are a good nutrient that offers exceptional benefits for the heart and head. Besides this, omega-3 rich snacks can also help you lift mood and battle fatigue without the roller coaster effect.
Smart snacking strategies
Following are the smart snacking strategies to make healthy snacking a part of your daily routine:
- Keep only healthy snacks in your refrigerator or pantry
- Have a fixed schedule for meals and snacks
- Practice mindful eating habits
- Don’t forget to read the nutrition particulars label when buying packaged snacks
- Keep healthy snacks with you when you are away from home.
Steffy Alen is a copywriter and content strategist. She helps businesses stop playing around with content marketing and start seeing the tangible ROI. She loves writing as much as she loves the cake.