5 Tips to Prevent Mindless Snacking

Maybe you’re catching up on work at home or you’re binge watching a new show on Hulu and you’re feeling a bit hungry. You grab the big box of organic whole-grain crackers you just picked up at the warehouse store and grab a few crackers as you work or watch. 

Before you know it, you’ve eaten more than half the box. Feelings of shame and guilt may follow your bout of mindless snacking, especially if you’re struggling to lose weight. However, according to the National Institutes of Health Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, mindless habits are responsible for many people’s eating choices. 

The good news is that you can change these habits. 

At Symonett Weight Loss Center in Colton, California, Dr. Elmer Symonett and our weight-loss specialists want to share some of our best tips on how you can prevent mindless snacking. 

1. Ask the right questions

Snacking is an important part of any healthy diet plan, even one focused on dropping unwanted pounds. However, hunger isn’t the only reason you may feel the urge to snack. 

So, before you head to the kitchen or the vending machine, ask yourself: “Am I really hungry?” Boredom and fatigue may trigger your desire to eat, or you may simply be thirsty. 

If you have an urge to grab a handful of chips from the open bag on the counter, consider making yourself a cup of tea instead. Sipping a warm beverage may help you get over your urge to snack. Drinking a glass of water may also quench your thirst and quash your hunger. 

2. Plan ahead

Nothing sabotages your weight-loss efforts faster than not knowing what you’re going to eat, especially if you’re already starving. To prevent mindless snacking that leads to overeating, create a meal plan that includes when and what you’re going to eat at each meal and snack. Plan a day, week, or month in advance, whatever works for you.

If you’re struggling to put a meal plan together, we can help. We offer dietary counseling with trained professionals who can design a personalized meal plan that fits your lifestyle and weight goals. 

3. Snack with control

Mindless snacking implies you’re not really aware of what and how much you’re eating. To prevent this type of uncontrolled eating, don’t eat out of the container. Instead, portion out an appropriate serving size before you start snacking and then put the container away.

4. Control hunger with fiber- and protein-rich foods

Hunger is the most common reason people fail to stick with their weight-loss diet plan. When you eat less, your fat cells release hunger hormones that are difficult to ignore. But you can fight off the hunger pangs by filling your diet with foods high in fiber and protein. High-fiber, high-protein snacks include:

We understand the power of hunger when it comes to weight loss, which is why we offer appetite suppressants to curb hunger and cravings and prolong satiety. 

5. Get enough sleep

You may be at greater risk of mindless snacking, especially on unhealthy junk food, if you’re not getting the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep you need every night. Sleep deprivation affects your hunger hormones and increases blood levels of a chemical that increases your desire for cookies, candy, and chips. 

The National Sleep Foundation notes you may mindlessly consume an extra 300 calories after a fitful night of sleep. 

Don’t let mindless eating habits keep you from reaching your weight goals. Let us help. Contact us today by calling the office in Colton, California, or booking an appointment online.

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