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Mindful Snacking

by Monica Muthappa |

Kids enjoying with parents

How we loved Summers at School with two long months of holidays. Even today this season always reminds me of holidays, yummy snacks and the mangoes

 

There is so much happening around us during this season taking our kids for holidays, planning vacations etc. have limited time to plan our exercises and we lose track of our diet

Changing perception with time

Most of us take it lightly as we think lets get back once kids start school or I am back from my vacation but making it harder to lose those extra weight gained and finally we give up making this a part of us. The last thing most of want is to look like you're "on a diet" or worse, hear about it. So you eat whatever is served and try to keep up with those around you

Its really hard when we are out to focus on our diet as it may not be available and the cravings are much more . Its okay to binge and not spoil your mood by controlling yourself but how do we balance it over the day is important .  

In the last episodes we have spoken about how refined sugar or refined flour absorb nutrition from our body to aid its absorption depleting our body of essential vitamins and minerals so we need to balance the nutrition in our body after binge eating episodes. But how do we do it?

Its really hard when we are out to focus on our diet as it may not be available and the cravings are much more . Its okay to binge and not spoil your mood by controlling yourself but how do we balance it over the day is important .  

How do we do it?

  • Satisfy cravings with healthier approaches.If you're crazy for chocolate, try a cocoa flavoured nutrition bar instead of a chocolate bar. Substitute yogurt or sorbet for ice cream. If you're craving savory munchies, snack on baked chips instead of regular chips and pair them with salsa instead of sour cream. Or satisfy salt cravings with roasted nuts and seeds.
  • Control Portions . If its difficult to alternate then control your portion and nourish your body soon after so that you add all the essential vitamins

  • Alternative to Junk foods

Fruits . Carrying fruits on holidays is always a great choice. Loaded with various health benefits, they also provide water and electrolytes keeping our body hydrated and energised.. My choice would be apples, oranges, guavas, . Try to pick those without added sugar, salt, flavour or preservatives. Even banana and mangoes can be a great option providing you enough energy

Fox Nuts: Traditionally known as makhanas, these puffed full of proteins and antioxidants. Easy to carry, you can also make these at home, but remember to limit the oil and salt content.

Cookies and Nutrition bars : Another best way to carry sweet snacks are cookies, but choose cookies that are made with whole grains like ragi, oats, millets, etc or from nuts and sweetened with jaggery, honey or dryfruits. Munch a couple to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Water or Tender Coconut water : Holiday beverages need to be more than just beer and wine, which keep you hydrated and energized throughout your holidays. Water is, of course, the best option. Buy a good reusable bottle and fill up before leaving your hotel instead of buying plastic bottles on the way, this way, you decrease your carbon foot print to. coconut water can be found everywhere. You may also opt for sugar-free fruit juices.

 

But we also need to keep in mind, the portion size for any snack even if healthy depending on the size suitable and completely avoid over eating

Why do we snack ? and is it important . Can we avoid it completely

  • Hunger is the main motivation behind snacking, but factors like location, social environment, time of day and food availability contribute as well.
  • In fact, people often snack when there is appetizing food around, even if they're not hungry.
  • In one study, when overweight and obese people were asked why they chose unhealthy snacks, the most common response was temptation, followed by being hungry and feeling low on energy .
  • Weather, Place can also have a huge impact on our cravings but each time we need to be mindful

We need to look at food as medicine and understand that what we eat would impact our cells, tissue , overall body and mind . So this season lets plan well in advance for our snacking options and even if you cant then lets have tender coconut water or fruits which are available everywhere .

Taste becomes a priority and to make the shift into health food they need to be satisfying. Enjoying taste and liking the food you eat makes your mood happier also and you also start craving for that healthy tasty food. Pay a lot of attention to ensure you love it as something forced down your throat may only be able to do it once or twice

The most important is to be mindful in choosing the food what suits us, portion size what is suitable for us and change our eating habits according to the present condition of our body and metabolism.

roasted almonds as healthy snacks

If parents introduce healthful tastes and flavors, such as carrots or broccoli, early on, an infant will not only rapidly adapt, but will also develop a preference for these flavors that could persist for a lifetime. So its important that we introduce healthy eating habits to our kids very young

Choco Millet cake made by Monica Muthappa at Flat  Tummies

According to research individual tastes such as sweet or bitter—are influenced by our experiences during the first few months of life." And if parents introduce healthful tastes and flavors, such as carrots or broccoli, early on, an infant will not only rapidly adapt, but will also develop a preference for these flavors that could persist for a lifetime. So its important that we introduce healthy eating habits to our kids very young

Here is a simple recipe which will satisfy your sweet tooth but keep you fit and healthy without worrying about weight gain or sugar control

Ingredients

  • Cashew – 1/cup
  • Ragi Powder – 1/cup
  • Flax-seed – tbsp
  • Hot water – tbsp
  • Cocoa powder – 3 tbsp
  • Coconut sugar – ½ cup
  • Coconut milk – ¼ cup
  • Baking Powder – 1/tbsp

Method

  • Grind cashews to a fine powder
  • Mix flax-seed in hot water and leave for 2 mins. Stir to form a gel like substance
  • Mix cocoa powder, cashew, baking powder, coconut sugar and ragi powder
  • Add the flax-seed mixture and mix coconut milk
  • Bake at 140c for 6 minutes

Choco Millet cake is ready which is Gluten Free, Vegan and Sugar free

A simple easy recipe using basic ingredients

You could alternate coconut sugar with jaggery , Coconut milk with almond milk or 2 tbsp ghee and ¼ cup milk for non-vegan options

Flax-seed can be alternated with two eggs (if you want to add eggs in your diet)

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