Snacking is not just a weight risk
Regular junk food snacking brings many risks. Processed foods are typically filled with loads of unhealthy saturated fats and high amounts of salt, calories, added sugar, and refined (unhealthy) grains. Eating too much of these foods can lead to increased blood sugar, constipation, or an increased LDL cholesterol level (which boosts the risk for heart disease).
If your snacking habits are off the rails, here are some tips to get back on track.
- Keep junk food out of the house. Without junk food lying around, you won’t be tempted to eat it.
- Plan healthy snacks. Stock your refrigerator and pantry with healthy snack foods such as fat-free Greek yogurt, berries, chopped vegetables, nuts (walnuts, almonds), hummus, or whole wheat crackers. Plan your daily snacks in advance, so you’ll be more likely to snack wisely.
- Zero in on hunger. Before snacking, ask yourself whether you’re hungry or just thirsty. A good way to tell drink an eight-ounce glass of water and then wait 10 to 15 minutes. If you’re still hungry, have a healthy snack.
- Don’t eat straight from the bag or carton. If you snack on an open bag of crackers or a tub of frozen yogurt, you may eat more than a single serving. Instead, portion out your serving in a dish.
- Eat mindfully. Turn off the TV, put down your phone, and pay attention to your snack. Savoring a piece of fine chocolate can be more satisfying than mindlessly gobbling down a whole chocolate bar.
For more information, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpao/features/healthy-eating-tips/index.html