You may wonder if it’s possible to lose weight while not giving up snacks. If you choose healthy, whole-food options with a lot of protein and nutrients, snacks can be integral to weight loss. Some can even help keep you full throughout the day and limit your cravings for unhealthy foods.
Eating a snack between meals helps curb your hunger so that you don’t inhale your dinner when you finally sit down to eat a meal. Snacking can also help you get in all the nutrients you need. On the flip side, grazing all day—particularly on foods with little nutritional value—may result in eating too much and packing on extra pounds.
These 10 snacks are smart choices that can help you lose weight.
People who chewed almonds thoroughly (up to 40 chews) felt full longer than those who chewed the same amount of nuts fewer times. Plus, almonds deliver filling fibre, protein and healthy fats.
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You don’t need to go on a grapefruit diet to reap the health benefits of this ruby fruit. Eating grapefruit with each meal, means you can lose up to 3 1/2 pounds over three months. Grapefruit may help manage appetite by lowering insulin levels.
Keep chickpeas in the pantry. They have a meaty texture and a nutty flavor along with plenty of satiating fibre and a little protein—perfect when you’re watching your weight. Try roasting them for a crunchy snack that packs up easily.
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Toss grapes in the freezer for an easy snack. Because they’re sweet and you savour them individually and slowly, you’ll get a lot of satisfaction for just a handful of calories.
Losing weight doesn’t mean giving up the foods you love. Believe it or not, giving yourself little treats may be the secret to losing weight—for good. Aiming to be “too good” sets you up to fail. If you like a glass of wine with dinner, make room for it. Prefer dessert? Skip the drink and go for a small chocolate treat instead.
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Popcorn is high in fibre, low in fat and delivers some protein. A 1-ounce serving (about 3 cups) of air-popped popcorn has 4 grams of fibre, almost 4 grams of protein, just over 1 gram of fat and clocks in at 110 calories. This combination makes it a snack with staying power.
Use snacks to fill nutritional gaps. Make your snacks count. Choose those that provide calcium and fibre—two nutrients that people often skimp on. Yogurt with fruit delivers calcium and fibre, plus protein and gut-healthy pro-biotics.
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Skip the vending machine and satisfy the afternoon “munchies” with a healthy snack you packed at home. You’ll save money and get a bigger bang for your nutritional buck. Try cut up veggies and some hummus. Planning snacks that provide both carbohydrates and protein will help tide you over until dinner.
Oatmeal is a complex carb, meaning it helps fill you up without spiking your blood sugar. Plus, it’s a good source of fibre and eating more fibre helps people lose weight and keep it off. While we think of it typically as breakfast, a small bowl of oats makes a hearty, filling and delicious snack.
To make this snack more convenient—keep a packet or two of unsweetened instant oatmeal at your desk or make overnight oats in a mason jar.
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10. Dried Fruit
Dried fruit is a portable, healthy snack. Eating fruit helps with weight-loss because it’s packed with filling fibre (and important vitamins and minerals). Look for fruit with no sugar or sweeteners added and pair dried fruit with nuts for a snack with a balance of healthy carbs and protein.