Having a Snack Attack?

Jun 29, 2020

Snacking.  It seems engrained in our society.  Everywhere you look, someone is snacking.  At their desk.  In the car.  Walking down the street.  Television ads are full of promotions for you to SNACK.  What is a “snack” by definition anyway?  A snack is defined as “a small amount of food eaten between meals.”  And sometimes, with some people, a snack isn’t just a SMALL amount of food.

As a bariatric surgery patient, you know that you are advised to avoid snacking between meals as it contributes to weight gain.  For many, snacking involves the eating of unhealthy foods such as candy, ice cream, cookies, and potato chips.  Snacking can be the beginning of a slippery slope that slides right into unhealthy eating at mealtimes as well.  So what is a bariatric patient to do in a world that places temptation to snack everywhere?

First, always remember: go back to the basics.  Acknowledge that your body plays a nasty trick on you when you get hungry between meals, making you think that thirst is hunger.  You heard that right…your body often disguises thirst as hunger.  So when you feel “snacky” between meals, reach for a glass of sugar-free beverage instead of a food item.  More often than not, this will quell your hunger and allow you to last until the next meal time. 

Another “back to basics” rule that will help you avoid snacking: focus your energy on healthy, well-balanced meals.  Eating 3-4 ounces of a healthy protein coupled with vegetables that are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and fiber will keep you full between meals.

It’s also important to keep snacks out of sight.  Don’t shop for groceries when hungry so that you aren’t tempted to buy snack foods.  And if you don’t buy them, they won’t show up in your pantry or fridge, taking away the ease of grabbing those unhealthy bites. 

Finally, take a step back and examine WHY you are snacking.  Are you bored?  Most people find that boredom often leads to snacking.  There are a plethora of things you can do to combat boredom!  Clean your house.  Do yard work.  Paint or restore old furniture.  Mediate.  Practice yoga.  Call a friend.  Take a warm bubble bath.  Read a book.  Dance to music.  Go for a walk.  Work on a crossword puzzle.  

Resisting the urge to snack can be challenging at times, but it is most definitely a task you can accomplish.  Put your knowledge and willpower to good use and battle the snack attacks with full force!  The good thing is, this fight won’t leave you with battle scars.  Rather, you’ll be left feeling proud of yourself and excited as you continue to see success with your weight loss. 

Questions or Concerns?
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