5 Snacking mistakes to avoid if you’re trying to lose weight

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Shutterstock.com/ Damir Khabirov

When starting your weight loss journey, you may find yourself feeling more hungry throughout the day. Sometimes between meals, you need a snack, and it’s encouraged to eat when you feel hungry. However, being sure you make the right choices when snacking is what will keep you moving forward while trying to lose weight instead of holding you back. Here are five snacking mistakes you can easily avoid.

Skipping snacks

Snacking between meals is perfectly acceptable to help void off hunger throughout the day. What you don’t want to do is to snack on something that isn’t going to hold you over such as pretzels or carrots. Instead, find something more filling like hummus to dip the carrots in or a type of nut butter. These dips can make a huge difference in your snacking game and keep you fuller longer.

Snacking when you’re not hungry

It’s easy to grab a bag of chips out of the pantry when you’re bored or trying to pass the time, but those emotions can become habits that will only hurt your weight loss journey. Before you reach for the candy bar, pause and think about how hungry you are actually feeling. If you were to base it on a scale of 1-10, you’d want to eat once you reached around a 7. At that point, make the smart decision to snack on something filling until your next meal.

Portions

No one really wants to count the grapes off the vine or the nuts out of the bag, but using careful, precise portion control will help you stay on track. Measure your portions with teaspoons, tablespoons, and ounces as needed, so you don’t overeat. Take the time to weigh or measure your snacks to help you see how much you should be eating.

Not planning ahead

Being prepared is key to maintaining focus during your weight loss journey. Meal prepping your lunches for the week is a smart way to ensure you always have a healthy option for work or school, so why not snack prep too. Pack carefully and pick items that you can easily grab to eat while working or running between meetings or classes. Just be sure they are filling options.

Not the right macros

Macronutrients are the fat and protein within the food that help keep you feeling full and satisfied. Eating only fruits for a meal is not a good idea as your blood sugar will rise then fall quickly, leaving you hungry before your next meal. Pairing fruits with almonds or a dip, such as peanut butter, will help fill the gap, so you aren’t reaching for another snack throughout the day.

So remember, snacking is okay and encouraged while losing weight, but you must be mindful. By taking careful measurements, packing right, being prepared, and picking smart snack options, your weight loss journey will only be improved as you dive into a healthy lifestyle and help you succeed.