How To Reduce Mindless Snacking

January 24, 2023

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Typically, when we talk about reducing snacking, we think of reducing mindless snacking. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having a snack if you are hungry. However, one thing I find with my one-on-one nutrition clients quite often is the desire to snack for other reasons.

There are three main reasons we snack:

  • We are bored
  • We are thirsty
  • We are hungry

Chances are, if you find yourself reaching for a snack, it’s for one of these reasons. Let’s chat about how to reduce mindless snacking on today’s podcast episode.

How to reduce mindless snacking?

Before you reach for something, take time to ask yourself these three questions:

  • Am I snacking because I’m hungry?
  • Am I snacking because I always get a snack at this time?
  • When was the last time I had a drink of water?

Keep in mind, if you are hungry… eat the snack. If your answer is one of the other two… sit down and drink a glass of water, wait 15 minutes and see how you feel.

Add a roadblock to your snacking time.

When snacking out of habit, taking time to add a roadblock to that habit can be helpful. Instead of grabbing a bag of chips and sitting back down at your computer or in front of a tv, put the chips in a bowl, and sit at a table without technology.

This creates a break in your habit that prevents you from mindlessly eating an entire bag of chips because you’re focused on something else.

You will also be able to focus more on your food and how you feel about the taste and feel of the chips.

Eat more vegetables.

You knew I was going to incorporate vegetables somewhere. By adding vegetables to lunch or dinner, you will be adding more fiber. More fiber keeps you regular (if you know what I mean) and helps keep you full for longer.

When you are full for longer, you will reduce mindless snacking by evaluating why you are snacking in the first place. It won’t be for hunger reasons.

Make sure you’re getting enough protein.

Along with vegetables… to fill yourself up, protein will be another key. MOST Americans are not eating enough protein. There are many different rules of thumb based on where you are in your fitness/health journey, but a good place to start with protein is 30g of protein per meal.

Swap out the snack options in your house.

Last but certainly not least, don’t buy the snacks you want to stop yourself from eating. What are you more likely to take if your option was a bag of Doritos or a handful of carrots? I don’t hate Doritos, but you are more likely to snack on them if they’re in the house.

Focus on nuts, fruits, vegetables, trail mix, or pretzels.

At the same time, don’t overthink snacking. It won’t hurt to have snacks here and there, but snacking is a situation where you must trust your body.

This week, I challenge you to pay more attention to those three questions; what are you finding?


Kristin Longacre

Hey There, I’m Kristin, a holistic nutrition coach helping busy moms find Nutrition Confidence by making eating healthy an easy option for their busy season of life.

How To Reduce Mindless Snacking