In Part 1 of our series on how important are snacks to your diet, Dr. Jen’s all-natural Protein Bars looked at why we snack and how much a part of our lives snacking has become. Family events, get togethers, social events, sports events, and our daily lives at home play a large part in forming our snacking habits. In part 2, we’ll examine the science behind snacking and offer us useful tips to make the most out of your snack choices.
WHAT DOES SCIENCE SAY ABOUT SNACKING?
Studies are mixed on the effects of snacking on your diet and on obesity levels. This is mainly due to the fact that many participants in these studies lie about the amount of food they consume because they are embarrassed if they overeat one day. There are studies that will support both prevalent views: snacking frequently is better for you and leads to weight loss or eliminating snacking is better for you and leads to weight loss.
IF SCIENCE IS NOT THE ANSWER, WHAT IS THE ANSWER TO SNACKING?
Ultimately, the answer to snacking lies in how you snack, what you snack on, and your individual metabolism. Genetics do play a role here as well. The key is taking in the right amount of calories to keep you alive, which maintains your current weight. This is known as your basal metabolic rate (BMR). Take in less calories to lose weight, more calories to gain weight.
Your BMR is as individual as your voice. It’s based on your age, weight, activity level, gender, muscle mass, and genetics. A qualified health professional can help you calculate this rate. However, an easy way to know this is the fit of your clothes. If your clothes fit the same day in and day out, then you’re taking in the right amount of calories. If your clothes are snug, you’re taking in too much. If your clothes are loose, you are losing weight.
Proper snacking has many benefits, including:
- Weight management tool
- Increased metabolism
- More energy
- Steady blood sugar levels
- Reduces sugar cravings
- Controls hunger
- Improves overall health
Proper snacking can result in eating less at the main meals and/or choosing healthier food options during the main meals. So instead of loading up on the potato chips, you’ll load up on the grilled chicken instead!
Dr Jen’s Ultimate Protein Bars recommends these tips when snacking:
- Be mindful when you snack. Don’t zone out in front of the TV with a whole bag of potato chips because before you know it, the bag is gone and you don’t remember eating that much.
- Measure out your snacks and put them in a bowl to eat. Studies show you only eat what’s in front of you. Before you sit down in front of the TV, take out the amount of chips you want to eat and place them in a bowl. Then you’ll automatically stop when they run out.
- Choose healthy snacks. Sure, chips taste great and satisfy our cravings for salt. But they are also high in carbohydrates and fat content. Snack instead on healthy options such as fruit and vegetables with a low-fat dip or homemade goodies such as trail mix and low-fat brownies you made — not a manufacturer.
- Balance your snack’s micronutrients. Your body functions optimally when micronutrients (protein, carbohydrates, and fat) are eaten together in the right proportions. You’ll avoid the highs and lows of the day and stay in the zone if you do.
- Plan your snacks like you do your meals. Every evening before bed, plan your next day’s eating. Bring your snacks with you when you’ll be away from home or at work. You’ll be much less likely to scarf your colleague’s birthday cake if you do!
We all have to eat in order to survive, and living in today’s world there’s no shortage of choices. No longer do we have to feast or famine or kill our every meal and prepare it. Food is a phone call away or less than a five minute drive for most of us. We’re bombarded with advertising images everywhere we go of delicious foods and savory tastes and smells. We’re encouraged to eat socially, eat at events, and eat all the time!
Snacking is a part of our world as much as the sunrise and sunset. Making smart, healthy choices is the key to not gaining weight and feeling your best. Dr. Jen’s Ultimate all-natural Protein Bars were created to fill the need we all have of a convenient, healthy snack choice. No artificial flavors or preservatives and made with allergy and sensitive-friendly ingredients, Dr. Jen’s Ultimate Protein Bars will help you feel energized and mentally sharp in between meals. If you’re seeking high-protein energy bars, order Dr. Jen’s all-natural Protein Bars today!