Your stomach is growling, but to your utter dismay your watch says lunchtime is still further away. Your mind takes you to the cookies that you spotted on the counter the other day. But you feel guilty to give in. However, be warned that staying away from a snack altogether and waiting for the lunchtime to come is not a wise option. A healthy snack is the best possible solution. Snacks are not necessarily bad for health. Experts say that small snack-like meals in between are far more beneficial than taking main meals thrice a day.
Low-fat whole-grain crackers, a piece of fruit or some raw vegetables etc are found to be extremely helpful in minimising the intake of food during the next mealtime. If you snack on these healthy food materials, you can effectively cut down the second or third helpings while having main meals. At the end of the day, the calorie count will also be lower.
While you select snacks, ensure that they satisfy your appetite. Moreover snacks must also provide energy to the hungry body. Nutrient level of snacks should also be higher. Whole grains are abundant in fibre and are also storehouses of complex carbohydrates. Nuts and seeds are high in protein content and monounsaturated fat and will thereby make you feel fuller for a longer period. Fresh fruits and raw vegetables easily provide a feeling of fullness and the fat content is absolutely zero. As a result, calorie increase will also be minimal.
Low-fat dairy products can also be tried out as a healthy snack. But always ensure that the ones you choose are low-fat versions. Yoghurts are generally high in added sugar and so “light” yoghurt varieties will be a better option.
Though it is true that healthy snacks can be beneficial to heath, if eaten in excess it will also result in accumulation of calories and will thereby do more harm than good