By KRS Edstrom
I love to snack. Because I work I am able to control what I eat during the day, but when I get home, I am starving and love to eat snacks all night. Unfortunately, I love carbohy-drates and they seem to be the only thing that makes me feel full. I eat healthy foods and seldom eat junk food. I have yogurt for breakfast and a turkey sandwich or yogurt for lunch. What else can you suggest I snack on that won’t put on pounds?
Loves to Snack
Dear Loves to Snack,
Limited, healthful snacking is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, snacking can help keep your blood sugar and energy levels stable so you won’t be as likely to overeat at meal times. However, it sounds like you may be doing a little “sport snacking” in the evenings, which can lead to weight gain. The question to ask yourself before each evening snack is, “Am I really hungry or just bored?”
Most importantly, be sure you don’t come home “starving” at the end of your day. This sets the stage for bad decision making in regard to food. Have a balanced lunch (not just yogurt) and, if needed, eat a snack in the late afternoon.
Eat a healthy dinner, a little at a time if you like. This may help curb your urge to “graze” on carbs all night long. Set limits on how many snacks you allow yourself in the evening, and stock up on snacks that don’t tempt you to go back “for just one more”.
Carbohydrates are fine as long as they aren’t refined, such as sweets, crackers
and chips. There are a lot of healthy snack options and I would encourage you to
explore the shelves of a good health food store. Some suggestions are: lightly
toasted rice cakes, turkey slices, raw almonds, raw vegetables dipped in yogurt
and spiced with your favorite herbs. Fruit is a good choice but may not satisfy
you for as long as other selections.
I can’t fit it all in! I am 39, have a full-time job, 3 kids (4 counting my husband), 2 dogs, parents who need my help, and a volunteer organization that is demanding of my time. I am also trying to take one class towards my MBA each quarter. Could you give me some time-management tips — fast?
Need More Time
Dear Need More Time,
Time management is not what you need. You need to apply the brakes or they will be applied for you in ways you won’t like. I am seeing too many women trying to cram too much in — doing it all, but experiencing little.
It is HOW we do things, the quality of the activity that makes the experience — and life — broader, more complete. Granted, we are victims of a high technology, faster-is-better era, but it is important to recognize we have created this runaway train (individually as well as globally) and we can also stop it.
There are many promising signs of awakening as we are beginning to realize life is not a contest or a race, but an intriguing journey to be savored. Our only job is to slow down and remain conscious during the trip.
I have advice for time management, but I won’t be detailing it here. Your first step is to make a huge effort to cut back on the activity (stop the classes for now), get domestic help, if only for one or two hours a week, and leave the outside volunteering for a few years down the road. You have enough volunteer activities to do at home.
Once you eliminate some activities and create more time, you may not need as
much time management as you thought. Your kids need that time now, and so do
YOU. One thing you might want to think about putting on your list before the
year ends... a wonderful, if inexpensive, vacation for you and your husband.
I would like to try and get pregnant in the near future and was wondering about saccharin and Nutra Sweet. I use one packet of Nutra Sweet in my one- and-only cup of coffee each day, and I often chew sugarless gum during the day, which I notice contains saccharin. What are the downfalls or side effects of these during pregnancy? Thanks.
Artificial Sweetener Dilemma
Artificial sweeteners are just that — artificial. They are comprised of chemicals which the liver has to process or, worse, store. The body is not built to process chemicals and it is an unfair thing to ask of it. If it is bad for you, imagine how it can affect a tiny fetus trying to build itself. Try natural sweeteners such as stevia, molasses, honey or barleymalt.
KRS Edstrom, M.S., is an auth-or, lecturer and columnist. She is available for private sessions (by phone or in person) and semin-ars on meditation, motivation, stress, pain, weight loss and other personal growth issues. Her books and audios offer solutions for healthful, conscious living. For free soothing guided meditations and more, visit KRS’ “Serenity and Meditation Corner” at www.AskKRS.com For more info call or e-mail KRS@AskKRS.com
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