12 keys to avoid snacking between meals
Snacking is a behavior that is characterized by eating out of hours in small quantities . Anxiety, boredom, hunger, meetings with friends and poor management of meals, among other causes, can lead us to peck.
Tips not to peck between hours
Snacking becomes a problem if we want to lose weight, because, generally, when we peck we opt for foods rich in fat, sugar or salt. In this article we present some psychological keys to avoid snacking .
1. Plan your meals and eat 5 times a day
Planning meals is one of the best alternatives for not pecking between meals . In fact, if we follow a diet and are well nourished, it is easier to avoid snacking. One of the best known strategies to avoid this is to eat 5 times a day.
If we eat three large meals throughout the day, it is possible that between meals we get hungry and, therefore, we peck. By dividing the daily calories into five meals, we favor that we do not have the extreme need to eat what we have at hand, because we will feel fuller during the day.
2. Keep in mind the time between meals
Scientific studies have shown that when we are trying to maintain our weight or lose weight , it is necessary to stabilize the blood sugar to avoid carving. This can be achieved by eating every 3 or 4 hours, which is in line with the previous point, that is, eating 5 meals a day. This will help us to be satiated for a longer time, which will prevent us from wanting to eat between meals.
3. Have a good breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day , and can determine the number of calories we consume throughout the day. According to scientific studies, people who eat a good breakfast, consume fewer calories throughout the day than those who decide not to eat breakfast. A full breakfast, containing carbohydrates, proteins, fiber and healthy fats can make a difference and prevent us from eating between meals. Of course, taking into account the five meals of the day, lunch should not be avoided either, because otherwise we can end up pecking in the middle of the morning.
4. Eat complex carbohydrates
One of the reasons why blood sugar increases is because we eat simple carbohydrates (and refined), which can be found, for example, in white bread or industrial bakery. This type of carbohydrates produce hyperglycemia.
Glucose is essential for our body; however, in high doses, our pancreas, by detecting the excess of this substance in the blood (what is known as hyperglycemia) releases insulin, the hormone responsible for bringing glucose from the blood to the muscle and liver. After this high glucose, the levels fall again causing us to want to eat more, especially sweets and high-fat foods. This is why it is necessary to eat foods rich in complex carbohydrates, such as brown rice, because they are digested progressively and do not produce glucose peaks.
5. Use the fiber in your favor
Fiber is a key substance for our digestive tract to work and better for a healthy faecal elimination . The fiber, in addition, keeps us more satiated, which prevents us from having hunger between meals. Complex carbohydrates are high in fiber, so eating high-fiber foods will also help prevent hyperglycemia.
- Related article: "The 16 most satiating and ideal foods to lose weight"
6. Eat protein
Experts recommend the consumption of proteins in slimming diets because they accelerate the metabolism , but, in addition, they also help us to stay more satiated. Eating protein will help you not feel the need to eat between meals. You can know the different types of proteins in our article: "The 20 types of proteins and their functions in the organism".
7. Treat pecking as a meal
Many times we despise lunch and snack, but one of the keys to the 5 daily meals is to treat each of the meals as if they were similar foods (ie, simply dividing the daily calories by 5). If we eat snacks between meals that do not leave us sated, what will happen is that we peck. On the other hand, if during lunch and snack we eat more and in a nutritious way, we will feel more satisfied throughout the day.
8. Take care of your environment
Caring for the environment is essential to avoid pecking, because it promotes self-control . This includes not having, for example, cookies in sight if you are in the office. If you are going to buy and you are a fan of chocolate, do not fill the fridge with this food because you will be eating it at the first exchange.
9. Eat fruit and drink water
If for whatever it is you have to peck, better you do it with fruit than with products that are high in fat or refined carbohydrates . Fruits contain few calories, are rich in water and also contain vitamins and minerals that are key to our health.
10. Drink water
In diets to lose weight and to avoid overeating between meals, the experts advise to be well hydrated , because it helps us feel satiated. If you get hungry, you can try to drink an infusion because it will make you feel satisfied.
11. Reduce sugar consumption
Reducing sugar consumption will help you avoid eating between meals . Eating excessively sweet foods, for example, honey, chocolate or industrial bakery causes the person to feel satiated at the time, but soon you should eat more and, therefore, peck. This is due to the comments in previous points, hyperglycemia.
12. Avoid boredom
Boredom and anxiety can lead you to want to eat foods rich in sugar and fat , so it's good to keep busy. When you notice that boredom is making an appearance, you can, for example, go to the gym or perform other activities that take you to the state of flow. In our article "55 things you can do when you're bored" we give you some tips to get out of boredom.