If you’re trying to lose weight, should you quit snacking? Not necessarily! Snacking with diabetes can be done healthily. What you have to watch are the types of snacks you consume.
If you are frequently feeling hungry between meals, well-chosen snacks such as fresh fruits, nuts, yoghurt and veggies will keep you feeling satisfied throughout the day. This in turn will lead to better main meal choices. That is because these whole-food snacks contain the right mix of nutrients to help you feel great. They also won’t send your blood glucose levels on a roller coaster. As a bonus, they contain less calories than your typical packaged or takeaway snacks.
If you find yourself frequently reaching for the biscuit tin or struggle to avoid snacks such as pastries, muffins or chocolate bars, it is very likely that you are consuming too much energy, saturated fat and sugar. This makes it harder to lose weight or to keep weight off.
You can still enjoy your favourite snacks, you might just choose to do less frequently.
Often, those first one to two bites off a rich snack are all you need to feel satisfied, so sharing with friends is always a good idea.
Top 5 tips for Snacking with Diabetes
1.) You may not need to snack. But if you do, try to choose at most 1-2 healthy snacks a day. Too much more and you may gain weight.
2.) Choose minimally processed snacks. The less ingredients in the list, the likely the better.
3.) Try to not snack when distracted, such as sitting at the computer or in front of the TV. Eat mindfully!
4.) Choose snacks that are less that 200 calories per serving, and preferably 15g carbohydrates. The infographic below gives some good ideas on the left hand side.
5.) An important thing to remember, if you don’t feel hungry between meals, snacks are not essential.