by Melina Jampolis, M.D., Physician Nutrition Specialist
“Don’t have a snack! You’re going to spoil your dinner!” We all remember hearing our mothers say that again and again when we were kids.
While Mom meant well, research actually shows that nutritious snacking between meals is a good way to slim down to a healthy weight that can be maintained over the long term.
With this in mind, I have Three Rules for Healthy Snacking:
#1. Taste is key. Choose snacks that taste good so you truly enjoy and feel satisfied. This can help prevent overeating as long as you stick to #2.
#2. Portion control. Choose snacks that come in single-serving packages or pre-package them yourself every Sunday night so you have easy grab and go options (this applies to everything but vegetables).
#3. Choose healthier options. In the real world, you can’t always be perfect. Just try to choose healthier snack options whenever possible.
Check out this video of mine for more details on healthier snacking:
I spend most of my time working with patients just like you who are trying to lose weight in the real world. For busy people, it’s about trying to design the best possible diet for your particular lifestyle.
Rather than feel guilty about snacking, I like to teach my patients how to manage their snacking in a healthy way. By choosing healthy options that taste good, you tend to eat less and can still lose weight while enjoying something tasty between meals.
There are an abundance of lower sugar, higher fiber and lower saturated fat snack options available. Combine them with the “built in” portion control of single-serving packages, and you are on your way to managing your snacking in a healthy way that will be supportive of your weight loss efforts.
(published July 6, 2012)
Dr. Melina Jampolis is a board certified physician nutrition specialist, the former host of Fit TV’s Diet Doctor, and the author of The Busy Person’s Guide to Permanent Weight Loss and The Calendar Diet. Specializing exclusively in nutrition for weight loss, disease prevention and treatment, Dr. Melina teaches a balanced and sustainable lifestyle-based eating and exercise program and has helped thousands of clients improve their health and well-being. She has a small private practice in Los Angeles and San Francisco.