health

Health Benefits Of Snacking That Will Make Your Munching Guilt Disappear

by Johanna Silver
Johanna is a writer who lives, works, and volunteers in New York.

For years and years, the theory has stood that eating less is better for your body and your health.

This has created a stigma on snacks — those little meals that we might indulge in throughout the day between breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

When the day drags on, and you are practically falling asleep at your desk, it can feel totally natural to grab for something that will sustain your mood and energy until dinner.

Well, we’re here to tell you that it is perfectly all right to have a little snack here and there throughout the day.

While indulging in unhealthy food that offers little benefit to your body should still be practiced in moderation, eating nutrient-rich snacks like these awesome ice pops is completely fine — and even good for you!

Below is a list of benefits that snacking outside of meals can have for your body.

So go ahead — grab a snack even — and learn why energy-boosting eating throughout the day can do wonderful things for your health, mind, and body.

Snacking Benefit #1: Provides Diverse Nutrients

Snacking Benefit #1: Provides Diverse Nutrients
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While eating three square meals a day is standard for most of us, grazing in between meals can actually be a very healthy lifestyle choice, especially if you are eating different types of food than you do for bigger meals.

Snacking can increase our nutrient intake and allow us to get the benefits of many different types of food.

And if you are in need of extra protein, vitamins, and fiber, adding more foods that have these nutrients in addition to your regular meals will give your body more of the good stuff it needs.

Snacking Benefit #2: Prevents Binge Eating

Snacking Benefit #2: Prevents Binge Eating
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We’ve all been there before: in an attempt to test our dietary willpower, we deny ourselves something to snack on for so long that we eventually give in and reach for something unhealthy.

While a nutrient-rich diet is super important, denying ourselves something yummy to snack on when we’re hungry will only increase our unhealthy cravings and make sustaining a healthy lifestyle seem like more of a chore.

Livestrong suggests snacking on yummy, filling foods in between meals to keep you satisfied throughout the day, like peanut butter, cheese, and fruit.

Snacking Benefit #3: Beats The Afternoon Slump

Snacking Benefit #3: Beats The Afternoon Slump
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There is nothing more monstrous or difficult to defeat than the late-afternoon slump.

When you’re stuck in that space between lunch and dinner, it can feel like you’re fighting your fatigue until you can eat again, which leads to sluggishness and no productivity.

But treating yourself to something to eat in between meals will help keep your energy up — just be careful of foods that can make you sleepy, like breads, pasta, and red meat.

Snacking Benefit #4: Raises Metabolism

Snacking Benefit #4: Raises Metabolism
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Keeping your body busy processing foods that are good for it will turn it into a well-oiled machine.

Snacking on heart-healthy foods like nuts will also keep your ticker and bloodstream pumping away, improving your body from the inside out.

So, the next time you are told that eating less is better for your body weight, remember that your metabolism needs to be functioning regularly in order to be the best it can be!

Snacking Benefit #5: Increases Concentration

Snacking Benefit #5: Increases Concentration
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According to the American Dietetic Association, snacking in between meals increases concentration when we eat focus-promoting foods, like blueberries, avocado, or dark chocolate.

This makes it easier to learn in school, get work done in the office, and be present and happy when you’re out with friends.

Since snacks curve our slumps throughout the day, they help us to be as full, sharp, and alert as we are right after a meal!

Snacking Benefit #6: Lowers Cholesterol

Snacking Benefit #6: Lowers Cholesterol
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It has been a longstanding theory that nibbling throughout the day negatively affects blood fats, since we are putting more potential for cholesterol in our systems.

And this may be true if you are filling up on unhealthy foods that do little for your body other than give you an oral fixation.

But short-terms studies have shown that people who ate frequently (six or more times a day) actually had a lower total blood cholesterol level than those who didn’t.

Snacking Benefit #7: Gives You Energy To Keep You Active

Snacking Benefit #7: Gives You Energy To Keep You Active
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Eating energy-producing foods throughout the day keep you full and motivated, which puts you in a better mental state to stay active!

And since being active has scores of benefits on the body, doing anything that keeps you craving an active lifestyle (like snacking) helps create those benefits, as well!

Snacking Benefit #8: Controls Your Blood Sugar

Snacking Benefit #8: Controls Your Blood Sugar
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Anyone who has to test their blood sugar or track it with a meter can tell you the importance of having a snack on hand to balance out their levels if need be.

What we eat has an immense effect on our blood and bodies, regardless of if we need to regulate it as closely as they do.

The European Food Information Council echoes the idea that eating little bits throughout the day helps our bodies (and blood sugar) balance out gradually throughout the day, as opposed to giving it a big dose of food to digest three times per day.

Snacking Benefit #9: Decreases The Chance Of Diabetes And Cardiovascular Disease

Snacking Benefit #9: Decreases The Chance Of Diabetes And Cardiovascular Disease
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Since snacking on body-benefitting foods is good for both blood sugar and cholesterol, it, in turn, helps lower our chance of getting heart and blood-related diseases.

Though we have been told for years that less is more when it comes to your body’s weight and health, satisfying your body throughout the day with a snack can do a lot more for it than denying it.

So, the next time you reach for a healthy snack in between meals, you can do so guilt-free because a little extra eating can actually be great for your body!

If you are a proud snacker, make sure to SHARE with friends and family on Facebook.