It’s 4 pm and you are fidgeting in your seat again; it’s not really your stomach but your mind growling, asking for something to munch on.
“Really where did that lunch go!”
You wonder as you reach out for the burfi that your friend is passing over from the next cubicle. And just like that you add up a whooping 280 calories to your today’s diet.
You are not satisfied, of course and you ask the bell boy to get some chaat from the shop below your office. More harm is coming your way!
Familiar? Time to learn to make smart snacking choices.
But Why Do You Feel Hungry at 4?
Usually there are three main reasons: either you missed your lunch, or the lunch was not satisfying. Or you are bored so you want to mindlessly munch. Or someone else around you is snacking.
- Figure out where you stand - that’s the first step!
- Second step is to choose right. There are enough healthy and tasty options possible. Ensure their availability so that you reach for these instead.
- Don’t think of snacks as extras, instead consciously work healthy bites into your diet and make them a part of your daily food plan.
- Print out a list of healthy snack options and keep it handy at your desk along with the information about where they can be sourced from. So that when the craving strikes, you know what to order.
- Portion size is of utmost importance, so just by cutting down the amount that you are eating (have one vada instead of two) you can keep things under control.
Simple Snack Recipes - Make Them While In Office
You can make these simple snack recipes while sitting at your desk:
Sprouted Pulses with Indian Garnishes
This is a low-calorie, high-protein snack food, ideal for eating around 4 pm.
It just takes 3-4 mins to prepare but it is healthy and yummy. You get a whopping amount of protein, fibre and a snack minus any butter which is extremely filling.
Mix some roasted chana with little lemon juice, salt, pepper or
chaat masala or onion.
More Smart Snack Options
Time to say no to samosas, muffins, chips, bread pakora and instant noodles.
Opt instead for:
- Low Calorie Vegetable Sandwich: Oat bread with veggies minus the mayo, or chicken without fat seasoning, made using hung curd. Get a good dosage of fibre that will keep you filled for a longer time and antioxidants from yogurt and veggies.
- Dhokla: This is a fermented food that is very easy to digest, low in calorie and adds much needed protein to the diet. It is very easily available too!
- Low Calorie Bhelpuri Mixes: When craving for something chatpata, go for a bhelpuri mix that is easy to make and is a much better option compared to other stuff available in the market.
- Roasted Chana with Chaat Masala & Lemon: Loaded with protein and iron, this is an excellent source of both (for vegetarians particularly).
- Yogurt with a Sprinkling of Mixed Roasted Seeds: While you are snacking, you might as well get a much-needed booster dose of calcium too!
- You can drink your snack too! How about a fruit smoothie made with plain yogurt, vegetables and fruits. Always a winner.
(Kavita Devgan is a weight management consultant, nutritionist, health columnist and author of ‘Don’t Diet! 50 Habits of Thin People’.)
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