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How to stop snacking

How to stop snacking

Do you find you just can't stop snacking? Eating and drinking between regular meals is something many of us find irresistible - especially when there's tasty food or drinks around.

The most common reason for snacking is to satisfy hunger. But other factors such as the social setting and the availability of food also come into play. And people often snack when they're not hungry, out of habit, because they're bored, or to satisfy an emotional need.

While some people believe that eating small, frequent meals is good for them, others worry that snacking makes it harder to lose weight. When we talk about snack foods, highly-processed items such as crisps, doughnuts, and cola are often the first items that come to mind. But snack foods don't have to be unhealthy - you can also snack on fruit, nuts, seeds, veggie sticks, and hummus.

 

Does snacking affect blood sugar?

While it's often believed that eating five or six small meals throughout the day helps to keep blood sugar levels stable, this isn't necessarily true.

Some studies have shown that those with type 2 diabetes have better insulin sensitivity, lower blood sugar levels and improved weight loss when they eat two large meals daily. However, other research indicated no difference in blood sugar levels when the overall amount of calories consumed per day remains the same, whether taken in two large meals or in smaller snacks.

If you opt to eat several snacks instead of a large meal, choose high fibre, low carb foods and those high in protein as they can be beneficial in stabilising blood sugar.

Tips to stop snacking - or to snack more healthily

So you've promised yourself you'll stop snacking, but you're still finding it hard to avoid the biscuit tin! Here are some tips to make it easier to stick to your resolution.

1. Bach Flowers Mix 51

Bach Flowers Mix 51 can help boost your self-discipline and support you while you change your eating habits. This blend of Bach Flowers also reduces feelings of guilt if you do succumb to temptation, so you're less likely to give up.

2. Eat well at mealtimes

If you're trying to snack less, it's essential to eat enough at mealtimes to satisfy your hunger. So make sure your meals contain the proteins, carbohydrates and fats your body needs to function well. Then, your craving for snacks should stop. How much should you eat? It's different for everyone and will depend on your activity levels, age and sex. Those with a very active lifestyle need more calories than those with a sedentary job. 

3. Make a meal plan

Make a meal plan so that you know what you're going to eat and when you're going to eat it. Choose your snack food and divide it into portions, so you're not tempted to overindulge. So for cheese, cut it into small cubes and store them in the fridge in small containers. You can do the same for raisins, nuts and seeds. This way, you can enjoy a snack while allowing for it in your daily calorie intake, and it won't ruin your weight loss diet.

4. Eat frequent, smaller meals

Some people find that eating several smaller meals per day works better than having two or three larger meals. Doing this boosts your metabolism and helps control blood sugar levels, avoiding the lows that can make you crave a sugary snack.

5. Drink plenty of water

If you feel hungry between meals, drink a glass of water. Often, when you think you're hungry, you're really just thirsty. So wait for fifteen minutes after drinking, then decide if you're still feeling hungry for a snack or whether you can wait for the next mealtime.

6. Eat fruit instead of sweets

If there are times when you must have something sweet, replace that chocolate bar with a healthier option. Try an apple, banana or a handful of grapes. Or opt for a snack with healthy fats, such as a few nuts or an avocado. Peel a banana, wrap it in foil and freeze for a healthy alternative to ice cream.

7. Are you hungry, or are you bored?

When you feel like snacking, stop and ask yourself whether you're actually hungry or just feeling bored? If you're bored, look for a distraction. See below:

8. Do something else!

When the craving for a snack strikes, do something to distract yourself. Take a bath, go for a walk, read a book or catch up with the ironing. It doesn't matter what you do. As long as you do something to disrupt your thought patterns, your cravings will disappear.

9. Keep a food diary

It's well known that keeping track of the calories you consume in a day makes you more conscious of what you eat, so you tend to eat less. So keep a food diary and record your daily intake, including any snacks.

10. Make snacks less accessible

Put snacks out of reach so you can't grab them so quickly. Divide snacks up and store them in portion-sized boxes or bags so that you have to consciously make an effort to open something to get at them. Doing this will avoid any "snacksidents", such as eating a whole pack of chocolate Hobnobs in one go.

A final word

Last but not least: don't deny yourself anything completely. If you've been good all week and avoided snacking, reward yourself at the weekend with a square or two of chocolate or your favourite crisps. If you completely rule out any snacking, you're more likely to succumb to temptation and wolf down a family-sized bag of crisps or a giant chocolate bar. So don't forbid yourself anything; instead, set limits. Everyone deserves a treat once in a while!

 

Sources:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/articles/resist_food_cravings

https://www.diabetes.org.uk/guide-to-diabetes/enjoy-food/eating-with-diabetes/food-psychology/emotional-eating-and-feasting

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/324474

Created by Tom Vermeersch

Tom Vermeersch

Tom Vermeersch is a certified Psychologist and Bach flower expert with more than 30 years of experience.

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How to stop snacking

How to stop snacking
How to stop snacking

Do you find you just can't stop snacking? Eating and drinking between regular meals is something many of us find irresistible - especially when there's tasty food or drinks around.

The most common reason for snacking is to satisfy hunger. But other factors such as the social setting and the availability of food also come into play. And people often snack when they're not hungry, out of habit, because they're bored, or to satisfy an emotional need.

While some people believe that eating small, frequent meals is good for them, others worry that snacking makes it harder to lose weight. When we talk about snack foods, highly-processed items such as crisps, doughnuts, and cola are often the first items that come to mind. But snack foods don't have to be unhealthy - you can also snack on fruit, nuts, seeds, veggie sticks, and hummus.

Bach flowers mix 51: Weight loss

Bach flowers mix 51 helps to:

  • Change your eating habits 
  • Have self-discipline during difficult times 
  • Find the courage not to give up when things are not going well 
  • Have enough patience when you don't see an immediate result 
  • To avoid feelings of guilt if you have sinned
Discover how Bach flowers mix 51 can help you
 

Does snacking affect blood sugar?

While it's often believed that eating five or six small meals throughout the day helps to keep blood sugar levels stable, this isn't necessarily true.

Some studies have shown that those with type 2 diabetes have better insulin sensitivity, lower blood sugar levels and improved weight loss when they eat two large meals daily. However, other research indicated no difference in blood sugar levels when the overall amount of calories consumed per day remains the same, whether taken in two large meals or in smaller snacks.

If you opt to eat several snacks instead of a large meal, choose high fibre, low carb foods and those high in protein as they can be beneficial in stabilising blood sugar.

Tips to stop snacking - or to snack more healthily

So you've promised yourself you'll stop snacking, but you're still finding it hard to avoid the biscuit tin! Here are some tips to make it easier to stick to your resolution.

1. Bach Flowers Mix 51

Bach Flowers Mix 51 can help boost your self-discipline and support you while you change your eating habits. This blend of Bach Flowers also reduces feelings of guilt if you do succumb to temptation, so you're less likely to give up.

2. Eat well at mealtimes

If you're trying to snack less, it's essential to eat enough at mealtimes to satisfy your hunger. So make sure your meals contain the proteins, carbohydrates and fats your body needs to function well. Then, your craving for snacks should stop. How much should you eat? It's different for everyone and will depend on your activity levels, age and sex. Those with a very active lifestyle need more calories than those with a sedentary job. 

3. Make a meal plan

Make a meal plan so that you know what you're going to eat and when you're going to eat it. Choose your snack food and divide it into portions, so you're not tempted to overindulge. So for cheese, cut it into small cubes and store them in the fridge in small containers. You can do the same for raisins, nuts and seeds. This way, you can enjoy a snack while allowing for it in your daily calorie intake, and it won't ruin your weight loss diet.

4. Eat frequent, smaller meals

Some people find that eating several smaller meals per day works better than having two or three larger meals. Doing this boosts your metabolism and helps control blood sugar levels, avoiding the lows that can make you crave a sugary snack.

5. Drink plenty of water

If you feel hungry between meals, drink a glass of water. Often, when you think you're hungry, you're really just thirsty. So wait for fifteen minutes after drinking, then decide if you're still feeling hungry for a snack or whether you can wait for the next mealtime.

6. Eat fruit instead of sweets

If there are times when you must have something sweet, replace that chocolate bar with a healthier option. Try an apple, banana or a handful of grapes. Or opt for a snack with healthy fats, such as a few nuts or an avocado. Peel a banana, wrap it in foil and freeze for a healthy alternative to ice cream.

7. Are you hungry, or are you bored?

When you feel like snacking, stop and ask yourself whether you're actually hungry or just feeling bored? If you're bored, look for a distraction. See below:

8. Do something else!

When the craving for a snack strikes, do something to distract yourself. Take a bath, go for a walk, read a book or catch up with the ironing. It doesn't matter what you do. As long as you do something to disrupt your thought patterns, your cravings will disappear.

9. Keep a food diary

It's well known that keeping track of the calories you consume in a day makes you more conscious of what you eat, so you tend to eat less. So keep a food diary and record your daily intake, including any snacks.

10. Make snacks less accessible

Put snacks out of reach so you can't grab them so quickly. Divide snacks up and store them in portion-sized boxes or bags so that you have to consciously make an effort to open something to get at them. Doing this will avoid any "snacksidents", such as eating a whole pack of chocolate Hobnobs in one go.

A final word

Last but not least: don't deny yourself anything completely. If you've been good all week and avoided snacking, reward yourself at the weekend with a square or two of chocolate or your favourite crisps. If you completely rule out any snacking, you're more likely to succumb to temptation and wolf down a family-sized bag of crisps or a giant chocolate bar. So don't forbid yourself anything; instead, set limits. Everyone deserves a treat once in a while!

 

Sources:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/articles/resist_food_cravings

https://www.diabetes.org.uk/guide-to-diabetes/enjoy-food/eating-with-diabetes/food-psychology/emotional-eating-and-feasting

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/324474


Marie Pure

Other articles


Why not me

Why not me?

It's natural to compare our own lives with those of others - weighing up the pros and cons of situations helps us make decisions. But there can be a downside when you find you're constantly comparing yourself with others, envying their seemingly perfect lives and wondering why they are luckier, more prosperous, and better looking than you.

Read the complete article

Are most people good or bad

Are most people good or bad?

Do you sometimes despair about humanity because it seems there are far more bad people than good? Are we primarily selfish individuals, thinking only about our own needs? Or is this cynical belief just because we spend so much time online? The truth is more complicated!

Read the complete article

Ten tips to help you get in shape for summer

Ten tips to help you get in shape for summer!

Looking to lose weight or tone up for the summer? Want to feel your best? Not sure you can meet your targets? Don’t fear. We have ten tips to help you get in shape for summer! Be realistic, be kind to yourself, and improve your health with our gentle and supportive suggestions.

Read the complete article

5 tips to survive autumn healthily

5 tips to survive autumn healthily

We simply can’t avoid noticing the changes all around us. Autumn is here... Autumn is also called a transitional season. Slowly and steadily, it prepares us for the transition...

Read the complete article

goede-voornemens

A new year, a new me

It’s such a positive thing to do and hope springs eternal, so why not commit yourself to a change this year? Here’s our tips on how to stick to your new year’s resolutions.

Read the complete article

Even the brightest minds have setbacks!

Even the brightest minds have setbacks!

We all want to be successful but many of us find the path to achieving our dreams is blocked by our fear of failure. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, go backpacking around the world or start up a new business, you need to accept that you might fail many times over before you achieve success.

Read the complete article

Do you expect too much from others Find out!

Do you expect too much from others? Find out!

Most people are disappointed when others don't meet their expectations. But when you always expect too much, it isn't healthy, either for yourself or for others. If you often find yourself feeling let down by your loved ones or even by strangers, could it be that you have unrealistic ideas of how people should act?

Read the complete article

12 reasons to be proud of your body

12 reasons to be proud of your body

Many people have hang ups about their bodies and this is such a shame. Read on to find 12 reasons why you should be proud of your body.

Read the complete article

Six things we think will make us happy, but don't!

Six things we think will make us happy, but don't!

When you think about things that will make you happy, what are the images that come to mind? Wealth, beauty, a dream house, long holidays, a top of the range car? Happiness is not a constant and how happy we feel depends on the way we choose to live our lives. 

Read the complete article

How to spice up your life

How to spice up your life

Do you feel you're always doing the same things and not getting anywhere? It's common to feel stuck in a rut, treading water and just going through the motions.

Read the complete article

Bach Flowers are not medicinal but harmless plant extracts which are used to support health.

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