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! Read more
Need to eat sugar is triggered by our body. This is body’s naturally tendency to tell you that blood sugar levels are dropping and need to be replenished. Over a period of time this physiological reaction becomes psychological and we start to mistake this desire as need. This is when most of the trouble begins that traditionally transforms into weight gain and then eventually lifestyle diseases like high blood sugar & diabetes type 2. Sugar cravings can be controlled and managed with some effort.
Sugar is a carbohydrate and quickly breaks down in our body providing energy and releases happy hormone serotonin which makes us feel good and reduces stress and anxiety. The sweet taste of sugar is liked by most people from birth and indulge in eating them for sugar cravings. Sugar is also known to release endorphins also known as “happy hormones” that is the reason why we also crave them when we are sad or generally stressed.
How do we control this urge? First we should start with understanding what is your daily sugar intake and what are the main sources of it. Let us explain this through an example of the common sugar foods consumed by us on a daily basis like a cup of tea/coffee, sweetened cereals like cornflakes, musselli aerated drinks or sweetened drinks like packaged juices & lemonade along with one or two desserts/chocolates through the day.
Here is a quick list of a calories per serving:
Sugar coated cereals- 127 kcal (3/4 cup)
Tea spn of sugar- 20 kcal
100 ml aerated drink/soda- 37 kcal
1 chocolate- (plain Bar , 49 g of chocolate) 250 Kcal
Packaged juice-110 kcal (250 ml)
Energy drinks-152 Kcal (350 ml/one can)
All this roughly mounts upto 700 calories if you have one of each of these things listed. Incase you are looking to lose weight than you just require 2 tea spoons of sugar in a day. Besides processed sugar doesnt have any health benefits . Read here to know how it affects our health. Read more
Kids need a filling and nutritious diet for growth and unhealthy foods will slow down their growth if the daily nutrition is not met accordingly. From carbohydrates for energy to go non-stop through out the day, the amino acids from protein to build muscle and recover them, vitamins and minerals for healthy functioning of organs and chemical reactions in the body
and fat for good cholesterol and cushioning of organs.
Though kids like foods that are surprising and delightful to their taste buds. Get creative with your recipes and start making your food nutritious and attractive. Here are foods for kids to kep them healthy. Give your child plenty of options ranging from chocolates to everything that they like.
Cornflakes with milk and fruits: We all feed our kids with cornflakes but make it more healthy with adding fruits to it. Include the fruit that your kids like eating. Strawberry, grapes, nuts, seeds, apples, bananas etc. This meal will provide your kid with carbs, protein and essential vitamins and minerals along with iron to improve metabolism.
Eggs: Eggs provide a lot of satiety and protein, vitamins and minerals. Make it healthier by adding a slice of cheese or add a few slices of vegetables like tomatoes, cucumber etc. The meal will keep the kids feel fuller and have lots of nutrition for a good growth.
Sandwiches: What about adding a slice of lean meat for non-vegetarians and cottage cheese for veggies ? Play around with your stuffing options with boiled mashed potatoes, cheese slice, tuna or vegetables. Choose whole grain bread or multiflour bread to make it more healthy.
Drinks: Say no to aerated drinks including the cola’s and sweetened sodas as they would add empty calories which is not healthy for a childs growth. Provide other varities from fresh fruit juice, lemonade, buttermilk, banana milk shake, mango shake and other shakes with fruits, nuts and seeds.
Walnuts: For healthy functioning of mind omega fatty acids are equally important. Walnuts, flaxseed and fish products like salmon, tuna etc are rich sources of omega 3 fatty acids which are important for developement of childs brain.
You can pick lots more healthy options for your child. Keep foods providing empty calories and junk that add no nutrition away from their diets. Use less oil in the food and avoid fried foods. Follow these basics and keep your kids healthy.