Written by Kimberley Gittens, RD on behalf of Rachel McBryan, RD
Snacking is often viewed as a bad habit that should be avoided and a barrier to weight loss. Despite what the diet culture may tell you, there is a purpose for snacking throughout the day and it can be part of a healthy lifestyle.
Benefits of Snacking
There are many benefits to snacking, including trying new foods. But when it comes to health, some of the key benefits of snacking include,
Provide Your Body with Energy
Between meals, your body relies on food you’ve consumed for energy. If we go too long before eating again, our bodies may exhaust the energy products from our last mean and begin to rely on stored forms of energy. Including a snack between meals, provides your body with the energy it needs until your next big meal.
Prevent Overeating at Your Next Meal
Having a snack between meals can help control your hunger, and even prevent overeating at your next meal.
Promote Nutrient Intake
If you have a small appetite, and find yourself eating small amounts at meals, including snacks throughout the day can be a great way to increase your nutrient intake.
Snacking with IBS can have some unique challenges. Picking up snacks off the shelf may be easy for many people, but if you’re living with IBS, the convenience leaves you with cramps or sends you running to the bathroom. –Some of my favourite IBS-friendly snacks that you can throw together on busy days and take with you, Blueberries + almonds
- Hardboiled egg + ½ banana
- Carrots + hummus
- Olives + walnuts + almonds
- Low FODMAP smoothie
Portioning is key for a low-FODMAP. Some foods are considered low-FODMAP in smaller portions, but are high-FODMAP in larger portions.
Off The Shelf Snacks
If you have a busy day or week and don’t have the time to make your own IBS-friendly snacks, there is some good news. Some brands have IBS-friendly products which can be a great snack option for you. One of my favourites is Fody Foods, which has a wide selection of low-FODMAP snacks including, chips and snack bars.
Tips for Building IBS-Friendly Snacks
Know and Avoid Your triggers
Understanding your personal trigger foods, and eliminating them from your snacks is essential to building an IBS-frinedly meals! The same goes for making snacks.
You can learn more about identifying your triggers here.
Make Sure Your Meals are Balanced
This means including carbohydrates, protein and fats in your snack. Combining all three macronutrients provides your body with the energy it needs (from the carbohydrates), while also regulating digestion and absorption to help you feel full and satisfied for a few hours, rather than a couple of minutes.
Get Help Identifying Your IBS-Triggers
Identifying your IBS triggers allows you to eliminate them from your diet, and prevent flares up and post-meal discomfort. Book a FREE discovery call today to learn more about working with a Registered Dietitian to manage your IBS!
The Science of Snacking. The Nutrition Source. (2021, February 18). Retrieved October 12, 2022, from https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/snacking/
Healthy Snacks. (n.d.). Canada’s Food Guide. Retrieved October 13, 2022, from https://food-guide.canada.ca/en/tips-for-healthy-eating/healthy-snacks/