Have you ever begun to relax for the evening only to feel a strong urge to snack on anything you can find? Maybe you’re not even hungry, but before you know it you’ve got stuck into the biscuits, chocolate, soft drink or chips. Most of us feel like this from time to time, but if it’s a regular occurrence then it’s worth looking at ways to break the habit before it becomes a problem that could lead to weight gain or chronic health problems long-term. People snack for various reasons, but there are ways to reduce it. Here are eight simple tips to help you kick the habit.
1. Get to bed earlier Are you a night owl who stays up late? The later you’re up, the more likely hunger will strike. Solution: go to bed earlier! Your body needs rest, and once in bed you’re unlikely to get up for a snack.
2. Avoid skipping breakfast or meals Skipping breakfast or meals during the day can leave you very hungry by the evening and more likely to snack. Have a good breakfast and eat properly during the day.
3. Eat filling healthy foods Can your food choices be improved? Sometimes the problem is your food choices. Food that has a low glycemic index and contains protein and fibre tend to be more filling. Bulking up meals with vegetables can also help fill you up.
4. Limit unhealthy snacks kept at home or buy single serves
If it’s in your kitchen, you’re more likely to eat it, so avoid buying it in the first place. But if you do, try buying it in single serves rather than bulk, so there isn’t seconds to go back for.
5. Get out of the house or find distractions
Sometimes we eat because we are bored or emotional. If this is you, look for things to distract you: go for a walk, phone a friend, play with the kids or do some housework.
6. Brush your teeth and floss
Brushing your teeth is a valuable way to keep you out of the kitchen. How? After you brush, it’s highly likely that laziness will get the better of you – who wants to brush their teeth twice?
7. Have a plan of attack If you tend to snack, having a plan of what you will do when that familiar feeling strikes can be crucial. Write out a plan and try to stick to it. Perhaps enlist the help of your family.
8. Have healthy low kilojoule alternatives available
Having healthy low kilojoule alternatives handy can dramatically cut down the kilojoules, sugars and fat consumed. Some good options include low kilojoule vegetables such as carrot, cucumber or celery sticks, cherry tomatoes, or even just a cup of tea.
Once the feeling strikes, snacking can be hard to control. But a little forethought and a plan of attack can really help you stop evening snacking in its tracks.
Hope this helps keep you on track and gives you more enerG!