Nutrition Tip of the Week: Take Control of Mindless After-Dinner SnackingThe following are some successful strategies that I employ as a nutrition coach with my clients (and myself) when it comes to an approach that is sustainable and avoids feelings of deprivation.
Take control of mindless after-dinner snacking
By Brittany Snyder, BLOC Nutrition Coach
Mindless after-dinner snacking is a habit that many of our clients grapple with. Cravings or a strong urge to snack at this time of day is a common struggle, even after a healthy day of eating!
If fat loss is your goal, then adding some simple parameters around after-dinner intake might be helpful. The following are some successful strategies that I employ as a nutrition coach with my clients (and myself) when it comes to an approach that is sustainable and avoids feelings of deprivation.
- Give yourself a set budget for after-dinner intake (to include drinks). Aim to set your boundary at slightly less (maybe 100-150 calories) than you’ve been doing before. Any calories not used can be rolled over until the end of the week. Got that birthday bash this weekend? Save up for it early in the week so that the cake is a “budgeted pleasure” and not a guilty one.
- Pair any snacks with something that offers at least 5g of protein. This will help stabilize cravings and blood sugars and often leave you feeling more satisfied overall.
- Give the craving a five-minute time-out. Putting a little bit of distance between the craving onset and consuming whatever it is you want to eat will give you a moment to pause. Do a body scan, and ask yourself, “what am I feeling, and what led to this craving?” Simply sit on the craving for five minutes without judgment. Just notice. After five minutes, you may still decide to pull the trigger and enjoy the item, or the craving will pass, and you will redirect that energy towards something different.
If you struggle with after-dinner munchies, I encourage you to pick one of these strategies and test drive it for at least a week.