Healthy snacking

Lifestyles

To snack or not to snack?

That’s a lifestyle decision. What’s right for you?

For some, snacking provides timely fuel and energy boosts for the day’s duties. Choosing good energy-boosting snacks will help contribute in a positive way by keeping blood sugar levels stable and metabolism burning at an even rate.

This may be necessary mid-morning for some and later in the afternoon for others.

Lifestyle advice for those needing a boost, eat an orange. The natural sugar gives an energy boost and high fiber creates a feeling of fullness.

For others, snacking is a rather mindless activity fueled by feelings of boredom and easy access to a world of cellophane ‘treats’.

When seated for long times, bored at work or school, or on a long travel commute, snacking has become a way of passing time and relieving boredom.

Unfortunately, snacks chosen in these situations are often high-calorie, loaded sugar and fat types which contribute little to overall energy and may, in fact, cause a drop in energy.

Human bodies thrive on healthy foods and have to work extra to metabolize and eliminate the sources of junk we ingest. The liver is especially involved as a filtering system and can become overtaxed with energy depletion a result. Be moderate with junk or eliminate it totally.

Some people snack only at night when relaxing in front of the television and are at risk of the tempting influence of advertising. Let’s face it, pizza ads are well done and it seems the cheese melts on the carpet in front of you. The taste senses are ignited. So, if snacking is part of your nightly ritual, be sure to monitor the influence of TV advertising. Plan your snacks carefully and in a timely way.

Choose fruits, raw veggies, yogurt, popcorn, light hot chocolate or a glass of milk and small snack. Practice environmental control by not stocking up on snack foods that you tend to overeat.

A sensible snacking principle is to consider your total food and calorie intake for the day. With larger meals, snacking may not be advisable as the extra calories will be stored as fat.

A good question to ask yourself when tempted to snack is whether or not your snacking is fueled by genuine need for fuel, by a passing mood or by the temptations of the cellophane world.

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