why do we snack and crave foods

Snacking and Craving Foods!

Oftentimes, one might consider snacking and craving something bad. This is because it’s commonly associated with unhealthy, greasy and oily foods. However, is it really all that bad? Learn about why it is hard for the human body to resist snacking and craving foods, the positive effects of snacking as well as some useful tips on how to make snacking a healthy habit for you and your loved ones.

why do we snack and crave foods

Why Do We Snack On Foods?

Snacking commonly refers to eating and drinking in between meals. Snacking often refers to unhealthy foods, but really snacking can be healthy and good for you. So then, why do we snack on foods? Typically, snacking usually takes place when one is hungry. However, factors like location, social environment, time of day and food availability contribute as well. In one study, when people with obesity or excess weight were asked why they chose unhealthy snacks, the most common response was temptation, followed by hunger and low energy levels.

benefits of snacking

Benefits Of Snacking

 

#1 Effects Of Weight

Most research indicates that snacking between meals does not affect weight. Healthy snacking on foods that are protein-rich and high in fibre can help one to lose weight. For example, a study on 17 people with diabetes reported that munching on snacks high in protein and slow-digesting carbs resulted in an average weight loss of 2.2 pounds (1 kg) within 4 weeks. However, these effects do depend on the types of snacks being consumed.

#2 Prevent Intense Hunger

Snacking can prevent intense and ravenous hunger. When you are hungry, do grab some food. If the body goes for too long without receiving the nutrition it needs, you could become so hungry that you overcompensate and eat way more than necessary during the next meal. Snacking can help keep hunger at bay, especially when your meals are further apart. Once again, healthy snacking is key!

tips for healthy snacking

Tips For Healthy Snacking

Once again, snacking can have its benefits. However, along with it comes a huge caveat – you need to eat healthily! Here are some tips for you to stay healthy.

#1 De-stress To Discourage Cravings

Oftentimes, excessive snacking can be linked to emotion and desire. You might feel a great compulsion to reach for a bag of chips when you are stressed and tired! “Food cravings arise to satisfy emotional needs, such as calming stress and reducing anxiety,” says Drewnowski, a well-known researcher on taste and food preferences. Carbohydrates, fat and sugar boost levels of the hormone serotonin, which has a calming effect. The more stressed a person is, the more you crave these unhealthy foods.

#2 Out Of Sight Does Not Mean Out Of Mind!

It can often be extremely harmful to heavily restrict one’s diet. However, completely giving in to all your cravings may not be the way to go. To satisfy your cravings, try having a smaller portion of what you feel like having, instead of completely resisting the urge to eat. Have a cube of chocolate or a handful of chips, instead of the whole bar of chocolate or the whole bag of chips. Have everything in moderation!

#3 Make Low-Calorie Choices

Full-fat, full-calorie snacks are always rich and luxurious. However, who says the lower-calorie alternatives with healthier substitutes can’t be as tasty? Try making lower-calories brownies or treats, which can be an excellent substitute to satisfy your cravings. Having beans or nuts in place of chips can be a good way to address your cravings instead of reaching for chips.

 

#4 Don’t Get Too Hungry!

Try not to skip meals! When you skip meals even when you are hungry, you may end up overeating during your next meal. Instead of subjecting your body to extreme hunger, have a healthy snack in between meals.

 

#5 Choose The Right Snacks

To stay healthy, choose snacks that are low in fat and added sugar. It should also be high in fibre, essential nutrients and water. As such, aim for snacks made from fruit, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy. It is exceptionally important to avoid foods and drinks that contain added sugar and oil, such as chips or chocolate bars.

 

Grab Some Healthy Snacks Today!

We hope this article has shown you how great snacking can be, as well as the importance of eating healthy options. Check out the links down below for healthy snack options!

0