I repeatedly tell my clients not to completely deprive themselves. But listening to this advice can be difficult when you’ve spent years equating healthy eating with deprivation. Snacking can be a real boon for your waistline. Especially if you DON’T limit your snacking to rabbit food. So today I want to talk want to talk about 7 scary weights you can gain weight when you stop snacking.
And then I’m going to talk about a free workshop all about the many ways you can make healthy snacking enjoyable. If snacking is good for you, you might as well make it fun. And eat lots of foods that you enjoy. So I’m going to go over how that’s completely realistically possible within a healthy diet.
Here are 7 scary ways that stopping yourself from snacking can lead to weight gain.
You can have afternoon dips in blood sugar
Your blood sugar can get all messed up when you’ve eaten like crap. So part of any healthy diet is to get that back on track. But if you’re not careful, your blood sugar can dip down really low. Making you feel lethargic and super hungry. And this is how you can start feeling like dieting equals deprivation. Because who wants to feel lifeless and without any energy?
You’ll start craving, craving, craving
It is a biological response to crave energy rich food when you’ve had a drop in blood sugar. That’s why you can’t get that Frappuccino, that piece of pizza or that jumbo bag of chips off your mind. So by snacking, you’re helping your blood sugar get back in line. And that will help your cravings take a nap.
You’ll be more likely to raid the food cabinet late at night
I’m sure you’ve lived through the scenario. You’ve eaten well all day, only to completely lose your shit come nightfall. And the more satisfaction you feel during the day, the more emotionally fulfilled you feel about what you’re eating. While nighttime binging is very often emotional, there is a physical component that assists your emotional struggle. So give yourself the best shot by eating for happiness during the day.
You’ll start ignoring your internal cues for hungry
Part of learning to eat healthy is learning to pay attention to your own internal cues for hunger and fullness. Which is why you should eat when you’re hungry. That part of learning how to not eat when you’re not hungry. So healthy snacking is a great way to learn how to listen to those internal cues, and respond in a positive fashion.
You’ll potentially give yourself a food reward later
You can feel like you’re eating well when you deprive yourself of snacks. But this can have a dark side. Because cutting out snacking isn’t necessarily healthy. And this behavior can lead you to wanting a food reward later. Which might be worse than what you would have originally eaten. So snack now to avoid this dysfunctional reward system later.
You’ll get less joy from eating
Bottom line: food can make you happy. So it’s important in any eating plan to find happiness. An afternoon snack can be something to look forward to. Oh, and I’m not talking about a pile of broccoli here. I’m talking about a real, fun afternoon snack. Because you won’t stick to a healthy eating plan if it leaves you blue.
FREE snacking workshop: Lose weight snacking on food you love!
But how do you include delicious, fulfilling snacking in a healthy lifestyle? That’s the conundrum, right? Like, if you knew the answer to that, you’d of been eating healthy and losing weight years ago.
That’s why I decided to hold a free online workshop. (Ah, this is what I hinted about earlier!) This workshop is not about boring “diet” snacking. This is about vibrant dynamic eating that lets you enjoy real comforting food so you can snack to your heart’s content. In this workshop, I’ll go over:
- Some of my favorite healthy versions of comfort foods
- Ways to snack at some of your favorite fast food restaurants
- Easy ways to snack healthy on the run
- Amazing tasty options you’d never thought about to help you lose weight
Learn about the workshop and then sign up! I hope you join me! (Oops…you missed i! But never fear. I’ll be holding other workshops in the future!)
Crazy- you think you’re cutting out calories- doing something good for yourself!
But you also have to watch the kinds of snacks you choose!
That’s why I’m holding the free workshop! Lots of great healthy and satisfying snack ideas.
Priyadarshini Rajendran says
Totally get it about the craving for more part when I go on a diet. Gonna check out your challenge and sign up.
robin rue says
Those cravings are legit. And I don’t care what anyone says, If I am craving some chocolate pudding, there IS no substitute for what I want. LOL.
Kristi McAllister says
When I cut out snacking, I always go crazy and eat something I shouldn’t. I’m learning the hard way to give into my hunger. I wish I could tell you I’m one of those people who can eat a tiny bit of whatever I’m craving, but I can’t! It’s the whole Snickers or nothing…and then a pizza later haha!
Flossie McCowald | SuperMomHacks says
Well put! I hope your workshop is a huge success! it’s important to eat a little something (preferably healthy, protein + carbs for lasting energy/filling) when we’re hungry so we don’t overdo it later!
Joanna @ Everyday Made Fresh says
Yes!! This is so true. It’s the same with skipping meals. You have to eat! However, we always tell ourselves to save those calories for later, or we tell ourselves less calories today less weight tomorrow…which isn’t always true.
I have a much harder time resisting cravings if I don’t snack. I am just so hungry and then it becomes a free for all.
Jessica Joachim says
These are great tips. I tend to be an emotional eater, so I had to really learn to control myself in that way,. Snacking can be great, if you snack on healthy foods 🙂
Beth Davidson says
This is something my husband does when he’s trying to lose weight. He skips snacks then pigs out at dinner. I try to tell him that won’t work, but he doesn’t listen. I have the opposite problem – I’m more likely to oversnack! Weight loss is hard.
AnnMarie John says
Snacking is definitely important that’s why I’m always on the look out for healthier ones, like fruits. I think it’s really important that we don’t take it out of our system, just be more smart about it.
Terri Steffes says
Snacking is a pro/con situation for me. I love to snack but if I do, I tend to eat more, if I don’t, I go through just like you said, cravings big time.
I’ve been experiencing more cravings than usual as I’m making small strides in tweaking my diet. I’ve switched to eating wraps at lunch (mostly vegetarian) as opposed to sandwiches on sourdough with mayo and lunch meat. My cravings run toward cheesy/salty rather than sweet. So since there’s still butter in my fridge, I find myself melting a tablespoon of butter and adding powdered garlic to it so I can then warm a whole wheat tortilla and dunk it in that yummy garlic butter. It’s negating the healthiness of my wraps! Soon, the butter will be no more and mayo is on it’s way out from the fridge as well. They key for me is to keep trying to find less calorie-rich, lower-fat foods that are also still filling and satisfying.
RoseMary Griffith says
Fruit is my favorite snack, but your blogs have made me understand that even fruit has to be eaten the right way and not in the mass quantities that I was doing!
i’ll check out your snack workshop and hope that it’s a great success!
Late night snacking is my nemesis. The kids are in bed. I want to sit, relax, and enjoy a yummy treat. And I have to remind myself it’s ok to indulge once in awhile, but make good choices throughout the day is key to a balanced healthy diet.
Cindy Ingalls says
This is so true. Whenever I don’t have a snack I end up getting extra hungry at night, especially after I work out. I should try to incorporate healthy snacking into my routine more often.
Doreen Pendgracs says
Great idea for an online workshop, Erica. I think we all battle with cravings and the desire for snacks. I love having little snacks, and usually, a few nuts will do the trick in that spell just before dinner when hunger is beginning to knock on my door.
I don’t cut out snacking but I limit myself. Like I don’t snack after 7pm, and I try to snack on healthier options. It freaks me out the stories I’ve heard of people who cut out snacking and gain.
Krystel | Disney on a Budget says
I’m literally snacking right now. Haha I need to get better at what I eat.
Hey Sharonoox says
I love snacks and crave for one from time to time. I’m also trying to loose a few lbs. I was told to eat less per serving but more frequently.
Raiding the cabinet late at night is one of the ones that always gets me. I do get cravings to snack late in the evening.
Lara | Grits in the City says
So true! I always thought snacking was a bad thing until I was pregnant and learned how much better I felt when I was snacking a bit – on healthy things – throughout the day. Of course, it’s taken no time at all to lapse back into those three heavy meals but this post is a good reminder to embrace those healthy snacks!
Cravings are always hard to resist! I try to eat healthy snacks/have healthy alternatives whenever I can!
Bradley Thompson says
Great Post! I totally agree that when you stop snacking completely isn’t beneficial in the long run, that is why I always try to eat healthy snacks!
I believe in snacking!! I actually have gotten to the point in my journey were I don’t bring home the not so good stuff anymore so it is easy to reach for something good.
Eating periodically can keep your metabolism up. Just make sure you choose better foods – skip the chips
I like to have snacks ready during the day so i know they are good for me!
Angela @marathonsandmotivation.com says
This is a great post with good reminders! I love having small, healthy snacks throughout the day!!
Nayantara Hegde says
Totally agree on the snacking part. When I needed to lose weight for medical reasons and had to see a nutritionist, she gave me a diet chart with double the amount of food than what I usually ate. I was shocked but to my surprise it really did help and I ended up achieving my weight loss goals. Snacking between meals is what helped immensely.
Renee @ The Good Hearted Woman says
This is great advice. I’ve fallen into all of these traps many times, and find I do best when I have at least a little something every few hours instead of going for hours and hours between meals.
This sounds so interesting! I go through months of sugar breaks, and the cravings are HARD at first. I’m sure you have great tips on how to get through that sugar dragon phase!!
These statements are so true because whenever I’m extra busy during the day, and I wait to eat in the evening, I usually eat a lot to make up for the fact that I hadn’t eaten earlier. And it’s usually something unhealthy. I’ve realized that I have to eat healthy snacks throughout the day to make sure my body stays satisfied.
This is so important but something most don’t recognize. Healthy snacking through the day has always been good for me.
These are great tips! I definitely feel better when I snack on healthy things throughout the day!
This is something I’ve never really thought about. I really must do more healthy snacking. That online course sounds great!
I have majorly cut down on my snacking since I’m on a diet plan (e.g. Medifast), but I didn’t realize that reducing snacking = weight gain. It makes sense, though!