Hungry? Congratulations, that means your metabolism is working!
1. Before you reach for a snack, KNOW YOUR CALORIE BUDGET*…
… to lose 1lb/wk ______ …to lose 2lbs/wk ______
To find your unique calorie budget visit: http://diettogo.com/free-diet-analysis
Without knowing your budget, you can easily go over your daily allotment of calories and jeopardize your chances for weight-loss or weight-maintenance success.
“I have room in my calorie budget for _______ extra calories beyond my healthy eating plan.”*
2. Before you reach for a snack ASK YOURSELF, “WHY DO I WANT A SNACK?”
___ Hungry ___Bored ___Stressed ___Lonely ___Happy ___It’s there
Hungry? We often mistake thirst for hunger. Try drinking a glass of water and, after ten minutes, if you are still hungry, have a snack and track it in your myDiettogo meal tracker.
Angry/Bored/Stressed/Lonely/Sad? What, besides food, can make you feel better?
_____________________ _____________________ ____________________
When you crave a snack due to emotional distress, try taking five deep breaths to calm yourself and then indulge in one of the three items you have listed above to overcome these feelings. These can be distractions like music, exercise, playing an instrument or phone game, etc.
Happy/It’s There? Treat yourself, track it and get right back on the wagon. Don’t linger or beat yourself up for indulging once in a while. If you deny yourself, you will just obsess and binge later. Enjoy it now and let it go, but be aware of the caloric impact so you don’t make excuses to do it regularly.
3. Before you reach for a snack, HAVE A PLAN…
Blood sugar takes a natural dip at 11 AM and 3 PM, so follow these tips to avoid feeling ravenous or sluggish:
Have a balanced breakfast (protein and carbs)
Have your lunch around 11:30 or right at noon to satisfy the 11 AM blood sugar low
Plan to have snacks that fit into your calorie budget around 3 PM and in the evening
Protein rich snacks are more satisfying and provide lasting energy – try edamame or a boiled egg
If you feel hungry before bed, drink a full glass of water and have a piece of fruit
If you don’t have much room in your calorie budget for snacking, stick with fresh fruit and fresh cut veggies, these are nutrient- and fiber- rich but light in calories
* Medical professionals do not recommend reducing calorie intake below 1,200 calories per day. If your calroie budget is lower than 1,200 you will want to add exercise to burn additional calories.
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Author: Kristen Ciuba
Kristen is a Nutritionist at Diet-to-Go, based in Lorton, VA. She tries to “practice what she preaches” by fitting in healthy foods and cooking, challenging exercise, and quality time with family and friends every day!