Lot of people believe that snacking in between meals can be unhealthy. There is also a wrong notion that most of the snacks are fried, junk and they are not good for your health and body. But the right kind of snacks can keep your hunger at bay and provide you the energy till your next meal. Healthy snacking can improve your metabolism which can help in weight loss.

Would you like to know more about snacking? Here are some tips for you to start snacking “smartly”:

1. Eat consciously — Do you snack when you are watching tv, surfing the internet or checking out your phone? It is better to avoid snacking when you are doing something else. With distractions around, you can tend to over eat the snack which may lead to weight gain. Be mindful of what you eat!

2. Snack only when you are hungry — Eating when you are bored, sad or when you feel lonely is not a good idea. It can lead to overeating and weight gain. Listen to the signs of hunger and eat a snack only when you feel hungry. Keep healthy snacks near you so that you can have them when there are hunger cues.

3. Keep a watch on the portion size — When you snack, keep in mind that it’s portion size should not match the main meal. It is after all a snack! Do not take out the snack from the box or a packet and eat it. Serve the required amount in a bowl or a plate and then have it. You can keep a check on the portion size and not overeat it too when you follow these.

4. Go for the right snacks — The type of snacks you choose matters a lot! If you go for that fried snack, sugar loaded cookies or unhealthy processed food, it would not do any good to you. Instead, choose snacks which have complex carbs, healthy fats, and are rich in fibre and protein. Some of these healthy snacks can be whole grain bread slice with a spoon of peanut/almond butter or with a egg, oats & dry fruits laddoo, fruit yogurt or a homemade granola bar.

5. Pack it and carry it — Plan your snacks ahead of time and carry it along with you. You can pack your healthy snacks in small boxes and take it to work or when you are on the go. When you have healthy snacks within your reach, you will avoid going to the convenience store or the office cafeteria to pick a chocolate, chips, cookies or may be a fried snack like pakoda, samosa etc.

6. Out of sight, out of mind — When you go for grocery shopping, avoid buying unhealthy snacks and storing it in your kitchen. When there is unhealthy, junk and sugary food near you, it is obvious that you would like to pick those and have it for your snacks.

If there are any junk snacks in the kitchen, store them in opaque containers rather than transparent containers. When the snacks are in transparent containers, there is an urge to have them. Store the unhealthy snacks in opaque boxes and healthy ones in transparent boxes.

With these helpful tips, planning some yummy and healthy snacks for the days ahead can be easy. Happy Snacking!