You heard it right – snacking and weight loss. But wait, does that even work? Isn’t, like, cutting down on snacks and eating less the whole point of weight loss? You’re trying to tell me that I can snack and still be fit?
To answer your questions: Yes, No, and Yes!
We’ve heard it so many times, that at this point it’s becoming a bit annoying. No, weight loss doesn’t mean cutting down on food and starving yourself. It means being aware of what you feed your body. If you’re binge eating processed foods, cake, and crackers while sipping on a sugary, carbonated drink and you’re calling it a snack – well, we’re sorry to break it down to you – you’re doing it wrong! That’s exactly the type of snack you should avoid.
Here’s the secret:
as long as your snacks contain complex carbohydrates, protein, and fat and are filling and healthy, you will indeed lose weight. Why? Well, first of all, because these types of snacks usually are not very caloric. Also, they’re not processed and filled to the brim with chemicals and what not, just to make them taste better, which will be a breath of fresh air for your organism. On top of all that, they’re usually composed of whole organic foods, rich in vitamins, minerals, and with strong antioxidant properties. Not to mention, they have fiber – something your body loves and needs plenty of. You’ll know what we mean when you incorporate these 4 foods into your diet.
Okay, okay, I get it. What are the foods, though?
If you’re that impatient, here you go:
Greek yogurt with added fruit (we like it best with berries)
Apples and nut butter
Hummus and veggies (or fruit, if you’re bold)
We’ll quickly go over each one and talk a little bit more about why you should add them to your diet immediately! If you want to spoil yourself after a long run or celebrate your new PR in the gym, but you don’t want to feel like you’re cheating on your fitness goals – then these snacks are definitely for you. They quicken your metabolism, they help you regulate your blood glucose levels, and they’re simply delicious. If you dare ask for more, we’ll definitely be surprised.
Greek yogurt with added fruit
On its own, Greek yogurt is already a perfectly suitable weight loss snack. It’s rich in protein and has very little calories. Not only that, but it also contains probiotics – microorganisms that live in our guts and help us with keeping it healthy. Having a healthy gut microbiome means that your organism can absorb the nutrients from the foods you eat easily, thus giving you more energy and making you healthier by taking good care of your immune system.
Eating plain old yogurt, however, isn’t all that pleasant. Sure, it’s healthy, sure – it has protein and it’s good for you, but it’s not something we’d consider a snack
. It’s not something that we’d reward ourselves with, especially after sweating for hours in the gym. The key here is to find the best topping – something you’d look forward to every day, but not something that reminds you of high school. Yes, we’re talking about cereal. That’s off the table.
Say hello to:
fruit. Berries, in particular. We recommend berries because their size-to-calories ratio is very forgiving when it comes to fitness goals. When you mix yogurt with berries, you often end up with quite a hefty meal, despite us calling it a snack all this time! It’s large in volume, which is actually good, because it will help you feel fuller, but at the same time it’s not packed with empty calories. A win-win?!
You can experiment with strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries – any berry, really, until you find your perfect match! If we had to choose one and stick to it for a long period of time, blueberries are 100% the winner. They contain antioxidants, they’re rich in collagen, and they speed up your metabolism. Not only that, but they’re full of micronutrients and they sport close to no calories! Get your hands on some Greek yogurt, grab a bunch of blueberries and enjoy one of the healthiest snacks you’ll ever have.
Apples and peanut butter
Do you remember those after-school days, when all you ever wanted was to play some video games and munch on peanut butter covered apples? Because we sure do! Apples are a no-brainer when it comes to a nutritious snack, but adding a tad bit of peanut butter (or almond butter) takes them to the next level!
The magic trick this snack performs is actually quite ordinary: it fills you up for a long period of time, which in turn prevents you from digging around the house for something to eat. That’s actually the main reason why it’s so effective, and also why so many people fail in their weight loss journey. Overeating is the main culprit that slows down our progress!
Having some apples with your favorite nut butter not only makes you feel warm and happy on the inside, but packs lots of fibers, vitamins, and protein – all vital for staying true to your goals.
Another, often overlooked, thing about apples is their capacity to inhibit your sugar cravings. That’s right, you wouldn’t think of apples as capable of soothing your sweet tooth, but that’s exactly what they do! Having less sugar cravings means you avoid all those processed snacks and drinks that set you miles back on your weight loss journey. Not to mention the guilt that comes along with them…
Hummus and veggies
Alright, so far we’ve covered the sweet side of things – the ways to defend yourself from those pesky sugar cravings, by substituting the usual donuts and cream with something healthier, and arguably, tastier.
Let’s spice things up a bit. Let’s say you want something salty, or at least something that isn’t sweet. In that case, hummus and veggies is your best bet! Hummus is naturally rich in protein, not to mention the heavenly taste it has! Pair it with your favorite veggies, using it as a dip, and voila – you’ve got yourself something fun to eat, delicious, and definitely weight loss-friendly.
Go ahead and grab some carrots, bell peppers, cucumbers, or if you’re bold and want to experiment, grab the leftover apples and use those as well! The combination is surprisingly good, not to mention how great you’ll feel post-workout, knowing that you got your protein in and that you’re sticking to your good habits and keeping your promises. Don’t forget that if you’re on a keto diet, you can add a teaspoon of olive oil to your hummus and make it even better.
You might notice a trend here – all of the snacks we recommend have two things in common – they’re low in calories and they pack a lot of fibers and protein. That’s precisely what you should aim for when wondering what to add to your diet to make it compatible with your fitness goals.
Trail mix is one of those things you can bring anywhere and eat anytime. It’s nutritious, it’s tasty, and it even goes well as an addition to your other snacks! Look for a mix containing dried fruits, seeds, nuts, and granola. The only catch here is that it’s easy to overindulge. As healthy as nuts are, they’re still highly caloric and overeating them will surely add up.
The bottom line
The truth is – we’re all human, we all have our moments where we go off track and mess up. It’s important to know that messing up doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world! What truly matters is trying again and again, and that’s doubly so when it comes to fitness and nutrition. We all know that it takes a hell of a long time to get in shape and to build lasting habits, so we should aim to conquer them one step at a time.
Give these snack ideas a chance and see what happens! You’ll feel much better knowing that you can refuse the temptation to grab something sweet and packed with sugar, and instead munch on some delicious healthy goodness! Your body will thank you for it!