If you are trying to lose weight then you have no doubt attempted to cut back on your food intake, or at the very least cut back on those foods you know are bad for you.
What about your snacking habits though, for some it is almost impossible to avoid these snacks between meals, however if you make the wrong snacking choices then your chances of achieving your weight loss goals can be harmed.
Lets look at some of these common snacking mistakes and how they can harm your weight loss efforts.
#1: Not snacking but overeating at dinner
While there would be some who would say that you should not snack at all, personally I do not agree.
Sometimes you will encounter these cravings and if you do not do something about them then they can affect your main meals.
If you are starving when it comes to your main meal then chances are you are going to overfill your plate, or even worse have a second helping.
Now, if you had a small snack to curb the cravings your main meal would have been a more normal portion size. So, you would consume fewer calories overall.
#2: You allow your snacks to become a main meal
A snack is just that, a small amount of food to curb your appetite. It really shouldn’t be a main meal.
Therefore it makes sense to try and keep the number of calories it contains down to around 150-200 calories.
When choosing snack foods try to choose those that contain a combination of protein, carbs and fats. This combination will fill you up, keep you full and will give you an energy boost too.
#3: Not snacking before or after a workout
If you want to lose weight then you need to ensure you are both eating a good diet and getting regular exercise.
However, if you do not have sufficient energy to exercise then your workouts will suffer.
If your meal time is close to when you exercise then you may no need a snack. You should choose to snack though if you have not eaten for hours prior to a workout.
#4: Eating because of boredom or other emotions
This is a problem that many of us will face, but if you are serious about achieving your weight loss goals then you will need to address it.
If you are bored or are stressed or unhappy then reaching for food is not the answer, especially if you are already unhappy with your weight.
I would instead suggest doing something to take your mind off these feelings, perhaps go for a walk or do something energetic. Exercise has been shown to release feel-good hormones so this will certainly help.
#5: You graze all day
Regardless of whether you are hungry or not you still find that you are unable to stop yourself from snacking almost constantly.
Of course this is not a good habit to have, and if you are overweight is likely to be the cause.
Is there a reason for this constant grazing? If there is then you need to take the necessary steps to try and stop it.
Perhaps look at what foods you are eating, do they contain the necessary nutrients required to satisfy both your hunger and your emotions?
Remember, a healthy diet must also satisfy you too, otherwise you wont be able to take control of those cravings and subsequent snacking habits.