Healthy snacks improve overall health, restrain cravings for unhealthy foods, fight weight gain, regulate mood swings, increase brain function, and provide the energy needed to get through the day feeling boosted, alert and present.
Fighting off the urge to get to the burger bar around the corner in the middle of a fast-food-craving or finish a bag of sweets in a moment of weakness can change your health significantly, when these habits are replaced by healthy snacks. Nutrition is the key to a healthy lifestyle that provides many benefits, such as reducing the risk of heart disease, cancer, depression and more.
Healthy snacking and weight control
Consuming healthy snacks prevents getting to a point during the day of extreme hunger which can lead you to over-eat during meals or attack the cookie box you asked your partner to hide from you. Nutritionists recommend eating small meals every three to five hours to resist the temptation to binge on high-fat, empty-calorie fast foods.
The easy part are the frequent meals. The challenging part is keeping them small, since people are used to larger meals – much more than your stomach, in its original size, can handle. It is recommended to eat at the most active times of the day. If a person can adjust his food intake to his energy levels, he will better control his weight. Another important tip is keeping healthy snacks at hand and the best way to avoid eating unhealthy food is simply to keep it away from your house.
Restraining false desire
Your blood sugar level drops about three to five hours after eating. Eating small, frequent snacks keeps your metabolism moving and helps normalize your blood sugar levels. Hunger can affect the body in terms of slowing metabolism and accumulation of unwanted extra weight.
Healthy snacks can be foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, low-fat dairy products, whole grains, and legumes as they are loaded with nutrients, fiber, and protein that your body needs. Plus, they provide protection from sugar peaks and lows, so a person is less prone to succumbing to sweets.
Healthy snacks, energy, mood and brain function
Nutritionists recommend thinking about food as fuel for your body. Sweetened snacks, low in nutrients cause rapid energy jolts followed by crashes leading to hunger, irritability, sleepiness and an inability to concentrate.
Healthy snacks balance the burning of energy that helps you to keep functioning during the day. They help eliminate the heavy feeling that comes from consuming too many calories at once. If you include protein in your snack, you will benefits more from other protein-laden foods such as fish, meat, eggs, cheese and tofu that contain an amino acid that increases the production of nerve conductors that regulate concentration and alertness.
Many people naturally reach for carbs when they experience a drop in energy because carbs help lift your mood and increase serotonin, the chemical substance in the brain. While processed foods such as chips and cookies provide a quick and high energy boost, they also sharply reduce energy. It’s better to get energy from fruits, honey, low fat dairy products, whole grains and vegetables, which lift your mood and eliminate fatigue without the whole inner roller coaster ride.
Omega-3 fatty acids are another good nutrient (for heart and brain function) you should add to your snack menu. Tuna, walnuts and a number of other omega-3 foods help fight off high blood pressure and heart disease as well as depression and anxiety, arthritis, schizophrenia, and ADHD.
Snacks are underestimated
So ladies, next time your Netflix-ing instead of working out, take that bowl of unsalted nuts and grab ‘m by the snack!