If you're trying to reduce your snack consumption, be aware that in the US alone, nearly 94% of people eat a snack at least once a day. Reducing snack consumption can be very difficult to do if it has become part of the habit, but after taking steps to change it, you will find that it is not as difficult as you think.
Method 1 of 3: Eat Healthy
Step 1. Eat three full meals a day
Foods that contain a variety of nutrients are better able to satisfy the appetite. So, making sure you eat a balanced diet so you don't get compelled to eat snacks is very important.
- Make sure to eat quality protein, fat, and carbohydrates at lunch, and not fast food. Quality food can keep hunger away throughout the day.
- Try including foods like avocados. Avocados are known to help maintain a feeling of fullness longer. Research shows that people who eat avocados at lunch feel about 25% fuller after eating.
Step 2. Make sure to have breakfast
A high-protein breakfast can not only increase satiety in the morning, it can also help people feel full in the afternoon. Aim to eat at least 35 grams of protein at breakfast to help you feel fuller throughout the day. Some ways to include protein in the breakfast menu include:
- Add an egg.
- Start the day by eating yogurt.
- Drink protein shakes.
Step 3. Have a late dinner, and center the dish with foods like rice, beans, and meat
Eating dinner right is important so you have time to digest but not starve before bed.
- Eat soup.
- Fill the dish with salad.
- Add a little soy. Compounds in soy are known to suppress appetite. This can help control your cravings for snacks.
Step 4. Eat high protein foods to help you feel full longer
Protein takes longer to digest. Thus, the food will last longer in the stomach. Check the label on the package when comparing food at the convenience store to choose one that can delay hunger.
Step 5. Try to eat healthy foods that are filling
Fiber-rich foods can increase satiety. Foods that can help you feel full include oatmeal, grapefruit, or popcorn. These foods can prevent you from wanting to eat snacks between meals.
Step 6. Choose the type of fat that is good for the body
Fats from nuts and olives can help you feel full longer. Avoid saturated fat because it can increase your desire to eat snacks. Many junk foods are high in saturated fat, and foods like these can make you want to snack on endlessly.
Fat contains more calories per gram than any other macronutrient. This means that fat can maintain and greatly increase satiety
Step 7. Enjoy food longer
Take time to chew food to facilitate digestion. Enjoying food for longer also allows the body to know that you are full. Research shows that people who chew more slowly feel less hungry.
Method 2 of 3: Recording Food Consumption
Step 1. Keep a food diary
Write down everything you eat in one day. These notes will help you understand your food intake, and make plans to change it. Taking the time and remembering when, how, and what you eat can be the key to controlling your consumption patterns. Unconscious eating can greatly affect the consumption of snacks and unhealthy eating patterns.
- Prepare a notebook.
- Record the place, time, type, and amount of food you eat honestly.
- Write down how you feel.
Step 2. Write down the definition of "snack" for you
Research shows that the way a person defines a snack plays a large role in hindering the conceptualization of this behavior. If you don't understand it, it will be more difficult to fix it. Make clear boundaries. Decide on what you consider a snack.
Step 3. Schedule a definite mealtime
Set definite breakfast, lunch, and dinner times with a gap of at least 3 to 4 hours between each. Creating a meal schedule like this can help you plan when you're hungry. Use a food diary to determine the best meal times.
This step is very important, especially when starting out, to make sure you eat regularly at the same time so that there are no leftovers, or worse, no food at all to eat at night
Step 4. Analyze your food diary
Find out when you eat the most, and more importantly what you eat as a snack between meals. In this way, you can determine the exact target. Some things that can help your planned strategy are:
- Pay attention to diet.
- Check the variations.
- Be positive to support yourself.
Step 5. Subtract one by one
You don't have to stop eating snacks right away. Even if this is your ultimate goal, starting little by little can help you reach your goal more easily. Think of these as small battles, and not big battlefields.
- Start slowly so you get used to new things.
- First, try to cut your snacks in half.
- Avoid eating snacks at all in one day, then do the same thing the next day. After 7 days, you may start to realize that you don't really need to snack. In the following week, avoid consuming other snacks.
Method 3 of 3: Get Used to Stop Eating Snacks
Step 1. Chew gum
Chewing gum can help make you feel like you're eating. Chewing gum can also help you overcome the urge to chew. The taste of the candy and the movement of your mouth can help reduce cravings for a snack. Opt for sugar-free gum if you're also cutting back on your calorie intake.
Step 2. Drink coffee or tea
Caffeine can not only help increase the body's energy when you feel weak, but also useful to suppress appetite. When you feel like snacking, try drinking a cup of tea or coffee instead. This drink will increase the body's energy while holding back hunger until the next meal.
Step 3. Exercise
Exercise is not only good for the body, but can also reduce the desire to eat snacks. Both moderate and vigorous intensity exercise for 15 minutes is known to help reduce snack consumption. Think of fun ways that can reduce your cravings for snacks. Plus, when you do end up eating a snack, burning off the extra calories that come in will make you feel better.
- Join in active sports games.
- Look for a gym nearby.
- Sign up for a self-defense or yoga practice.
- Do something that keeps your hands busy.
Step 4. Sleep
Sometimes, the best way to avoid snacks, especially late at night, is to sleep. Napping can also be a powerful way to avoid the temptation of a bag of potato chips.
Step 5. Drink water whenever you want to have a snack
Water can help you feel full, quell false hunger, and it's also low in calories so it doesn't make you feel guilty. Drinking water can help you control yourself, improve your skin, and improve your overall health. Water is very important especially if you eat protein rich foods to control hunger as it is needed to digest it. If you exercise more and drink more coffee to stop snacking, you also need to drink water to avoid dehydration.
- Bring a water bottle.
- Be sure to drink a glass or two of water when eating out at restaurants.
- Try sparkling water.
Step 6. Find the disgusting thing
Smelling something disgusting can take away your appetite. When you feel like eating a snack, inhale the smell of garbage or vinegar. Cleaning a pet litter box or toilet is also not an appetizing thing.
Step 7. Put the rubber band on the wrist
Flick the rubber when you want to eat a snack. This will help build negative associations with snack cravings. After being awake for a long time, these associations will help you control your cravings for snacks.
Step 8. Imagine that you have eaten
There are a number of new diets that involve imagining activities to keep the cravings away. Due to the fact that the tenth bar of chocolate you consume is no more filling than the first, imagining that you have eaten nine bars of chocolate may do so to reduce your overall craving. Try to imagine that you have eaten a box full of snacks.
- This may actually whet your appetite at first, but you'll get used to it eventually, and you'll no longer want to snack as much as before. You may not even want to have a snack at all.
- For this method to take effect, you must imagine yourself eating the same foods that you are trying to avoid in large quantities.
Step 9. Get busy
Forgetting hunger while busy doing something challenging and/or fun is actually easy to do. Try pursuing a hobby or doing something productive. Replace your bad habits with new good habits. This can be a powerful way to control unhealthy eating habits.
- Clean the house.
- Call a friend.
Step 10. Get into hypnosis
Hypnotizing yourself or with the help of others can be an effective way to control the behavior you want to change. Research shows that hypnosis can provide significant benefits for those trying to reduce unhealthy eating habits. Find a hypnotherapist near you or buy a hypnosis CD for weight loss online.
Step 11. Ask a friend to support your habit
Choose someone who will support you when you doubt it will work. When you feel like having a snack, call them and let them convince you not to. You can even eat together, and talking during your meal will make you eat more slowly while making you feel fuller.
- Never eat snacks while watching TV because it can interfere with your memory of food intake. As a result, you won't remember how many snacks you ate and don't stop.
- Avoid things that trigger your desire to eat snacks.
- Brush your teeth earlier than usual to help prevent the urge to snack at night.