6 Snacking Mistakes to Avoid That Hinder Weight Loss
Everyone loves a good snack — but can snacking be a detriment to weight loss? Find out the top six mistakes to avoid to improve your snacktime success.
1. Mindless Snacking
Have you ever noticed how much popcorn you can eat while watching a movie? It’s neverending! This is mindless snacking at its core — being distracted and not realizing how much you consume. Mindless snacking is also eating while working, driving, scrolling Instagram, or even talking to someone else. Try to keep your snacktimes mindful and distraction-free.
2. Overeating Healthy Snacks
Foods like nuts, seeds, or nut butter are definitely healthy snacks for us — but it’s also easy to overconsume them. Because these snacks are calorie- and fat-dense, eating too many of them can hinder your weight loss goals if you’re having too many. A good rule of thumb is two tablespoons of nut butter or one handful of nuts.
3. Not Snacking At All
On the flip side, not snacking at all can be detrimental for some people, leading to overeating if you show up ravenous at the next meal. Although you might think that you’re avoiding calories by not snacking, it can backfire if you end up eating more later — and possibly feeling over-full, uncomfortable, or bloated. However, we’re all different — some people just don’t like snacks! Always listen to your own body’s hunger cues when snack time rolls around.
4. Fearing Fruits
Many people on weight loss journeys are fearful of the sugar in fruit and try to avoid it. However, fruit is an incredibly healthy food, packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. Like nuts and seeds, we just don’t want to overdo it with fruit — up to two servings per day tends to be the “sweet spot.”
5. Carb-Only Snacking
While it can be tempting to want to snack on pretzels, chips, or crackers, these snacks are detrimental to weight loss because they don’t keep you full and can spike your blood sugar. This can also occur if you eat fruit on its own — try pairing a piece of fruit with some fat (like nut butter) or protein (like string cheese) to increase satiety and keep your blood sugar in check.
6. Not Planning Ahead
Planning is half of the battle when it comes to being healthy. Showing up to a full day of work or school with only a small salad in your lunchbox isn’t going to cut it. Plan ahead the night before and pack a few extra healthy snacks — that way, if you become hungry while you’re still away from home, you won’t resort to getting unhealthy food from the vending machine or drive-thru.