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Snack Happy: What To Eat This Afternoon

When you hit that mid-afternoon slump, it's tempting to reach for junk food. A small candy bar or a handful of salty chips may not seem like a big deal, especially when you've been eating healthy all day. The problem with eating even a little amount of junk food is that about 20 minutes after you eat it, your blood sugar crashes. With a low blood sugar level, you'll crave salty or sweet foods even more. As your insulin rises, you feel tired and grumpy, leaving you physically unsatisfied but still hungry. A vicious, frustrating cycle ensues.

How To Avoid Afternoon Sugar Crashes

The ideal afternoon snack to keep you full and energized is high in protein, fat, and low glycemic carbs. These three components fulfill the body in the following ways:

  • Protein. Protein offers nourishment while satisfying hunger, ensuring that you'll be able to stay active throughout the afternoon without thinking about food.

  • Fat. The food industry and media have given fat a bad rap. The body relies on healthy fat to stay full and satisfied. Without a sufficient amount of fat, the body craves junk food. Opt for healthy fats such as seeds, nuts, avocado, eggs, coconut, jerky, and olives to keep your appetite at bay, helping you avoid overeating.

  • Carbohydrates. In recent years, carbohydrates have also been aligned with a negative connotation. While processed, high-glycemic, flour-based snack foods do more harm than good, low glycemic carbs rich in nutrients decrease cravings. Fruits and vegetables are great options.

What Other Foods Can I Eat To Remain Full And Energetic?

  • Trail mix. Look for trail mixes that contain lots of nuts and dried fruits. If you aren't happy with any of the commercial trail mixes or you want to save a few dollars, make your own trail mix. Be mindful that you consume the recommended serving size.

  • Apple or banana with almond butter. Bring an apple, banana, or other easily portable fruit and a single serving, squeeze almond butter pouch when you're on the go for simple, quick, healthy snacking.

  • Popcorn. Air pop kernels and toss them lightly with olive oil or coconut oil for low-calorie flavor.

What’s The Best Time For Afternoon Snacking?

Enjoying an afternoon snack two or three hours after lunch keeps cravings at bay to increase late afternoon productivity without ruining your dinner appetite. Plan ahead so that you have healthy, satisfying snacks on hand, reducing the temptation to reach for junk food.

Matrix Age Management strives to bring clients back to an optimal state of health and happiness through exercise, stress management, quality sleep, hormone therapy, and prescription grade supplements. To learn more, contact us today.

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Tags: Nutrition

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