Eating is our favourite pastime and we often structure our day around our meals because lets face it, breakfast, lunch and dinner are the best parts of the day. Even the analog clock is out-dated, all we need is points on it telling us acceptable eating times and we can figure out the rest.
Because of the happiness that food brings us, many people struggle with weight and it’s often due to big portion sizes, packaged snack foods and excessive consumption of processed foods.
Don’t feel disheartened though; here are some of our tips for happy snacking without the hefty repercussions.
Prepare for the snack attack
Bad decisions are made when we’re hungry and unprepared! Instead of stopping at the servo for some processed relief when the hunger hits, prepare healthy snacks to have on the go. Homemade dips are delicious ways to steer clear of other sugar and additive laden foods and are a good way to sneak some extra veggies into your day. Beetroot, hummus and the trusty guacamole are all relatively clean dips that are easy to make at home and will up your intake of vitamins, healthy fats and fibre. Pair these with some raw veggie sticks and you’ve got yourself a snack that won’t harm your booty. Other nutritious snack options include boiled eggs, homemade protein balls and raw nuts. But beware, these options are calorie dense and should be consumed in moderation. And no- that doesn’t mean the whole batch in one day. The trick is to package these into individual portion sizes and leave the rest at home.
Portion Control- You Should Make Friends With Salad
Portion size is potentially the biggest reason for a seemingly clean diet yielding little results. Often when plating up, people tend to pile on the proteins, animal products and carbohydrates and that’s where weight gain happens. Meats, fish, cheese, eggs, rice (and other carbs) are all nutritionally valuable food groups however are high in calories and when we’re overdoing them at meal times to satiate hunger, we’re consuming more energy than we’re exerting. The trick is to base your meal around vegetables, filling most of your plate with salad or colourful veggies and then adding the proteins and carbs in healthy portion sizes.
Big salads with your proteins mixed in create the illusion of larger portions, however are jam packed with vegetables so you’re filling your stomach with more salad. They also make you more inclined to skip the starchy white carbs because you’ve satisfied your hunger with veggies (unbeknownst to your taste buds that are too focused on your choice of fish/meat/cheese you’re consuming simultaneously). Find some salad recipes that you love and eating veggies won’t seem to be such a chore.
Sweet Tooth Control
We all get those sugar cravings and when they hit, they hit hard. But instead of satisfying them with your standard, store-bought chocolate and lollies, keep some healthier alternatives on hand at home. If you’ve got time, whip up some banana ice cream to keep in the freezer and top it with pomegranate for a perfectly healthy dessert. If its caramel you’re craving, dates are a great alternative and are naturally sweet so will curb your deviant desires in no time. If the only thing that can satiate your chocolate craving is chocolate, have a couple of squares of dark chocolate, but make sure its at least 70% cocoa to avoid other nasty additives. When sugar cravings hit, fruit is your best friend and an extremely worthy alternative to processed treats. But just as with everything else- moderation is key.
With these tips and tricks you’re sure to get your eating on track and paired with sufficient effort at the gym your results will skyrocket.