Are putting on weight due to snacking? We all know that eating at odd hours leads to weight gain. But how do you deal with hunger pangs without starving yourself. To answer one of the most common dilemmas of how to control snacking we have put together a list of healthy snacks alongside some not so healthy snacks. This is done to explain why you should be eating this and not that.
Before we move on to the healthy vs unhealthy snack list you need to understand snacks are just fillers or small bites. Most people eat snacks like a meal and thats where the problem starts. When one samosa becomes two or one sandwich becomes two sandwiches.
To elaborate a little bit more here are some points to note
While snacking eat slowly and enjoy every bite that you eat. Eating slowly makes you chew the food properly and eat less also. This helps you in managing portion and not over eating.
Don’t snack on empty calories even though you can manage the portion because it will add no nutrition and only calories.
Lets further explain it with an example on how to control your calories better if you are on a weight loss routine. A man weighing 80 kgs and 175 cms would approximately require 2000 calories in a single day. To break it further he would have a daily quota of 250 calories for 2 snacks in a day. While a women weighing 50 kg and 5 feet 2 inches would require approximately 1400 calories in a day and 175 calories each for snacking twice in a day. This means you can divide your snack for once during mid morning and once in the routine evening. But remember snacking includes your tea/coffee/coke/lemonade etc!
Here are some 200 calories snack options
Sandwich: You can prepare yourself either chicken sandwich or mixed veggie sandwich with light chesse and snack it when you do. Though it would cross to 240 calories but is always better than your samosa’s, bread pakora’s, kachori, nuggets etc which is greasy and adds a huge number of calories in a single piece.
Peanut salads: Choose roasted peanuts as it has higher nutritional value. Slice some tomatoes, green chilles, onions, cucumber and mix some peanuts and toss it up. Squeeze some lemon and salt for taste.
Nuts: Snacking doesn’t have to be something big. You could snack nuts like walnuts, almonds , cashew-nuts and pistachios in your snack. These nuts are rich in nutrition and contain healthy fatty acids for brain health as well. Choose two nuts and carry 8 pieces of each and snack it whenever you feel like.
Fruit: Picking up a fruit and eating it is the most convinient snacking option available. Eat a banana or a pear or an apple whenever you feel hungry. Pick up a seasonal fruit and you could eat it anytime.
Yogurt: Yogurt is available almost anywhere and is filling and adds less calories. It is rich in calcium and vitamin D along with other important nutrients. It contains probiotics which are healthy bacteria for your intestine promoting better digestion and reduces constipation etc. You could opt for greek yogurt which is filling and healthy. You could fruits or nuts and seeds in your yogurt.
Tandoori Chicken: Meats are healthy options and especially grilled chicken is healthier than fried or baked. Order for skinless chicken and eat not more than 2 pieces to the maximun. Avoid any drinks along as it will again increase the calorie intake.
Dhokla: Dhokla is delicious and the ingredients it is made from is healthy as well. It is high in fiber and contains bengal gram which adds nutrition to the diet as well. Two pieces of dhokla will limit your calorie intake.
Chaat: Often people in the evening delight their taste buds with the chaat. There are variety of chaat where some are healthy and some are not. Avoid potato chaat as it is high in calories. Papdi chaat is also high in calories as it provides 300 calories in a single plate. Gol gappa’s provide 150-180 calories but are fried and contain no nutrition. Instead opt for chick pea chaat and spice it up for faster metabolism. If you can’t control yourself as always then advoid eating more than half plate.Author Information — this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo