Snacks are arguably one of the greatest ways we make food available to ourselves. Dieticians and nutritionists as well as fitness experts alike celebrate the idea of snacking. Snacks are the meals in between meals which helps us curb hunger, satisfy a craving, and keep our energy up. A little snack here and a little snack there can be healthy and even beneficial if it includes the right kind of food. However, snacking can become a problem. Despite our deep love for a good snack, sometimes our good snacks can turn into bad snacks. Impulse control and management are not tools that addicts and alcoholics excel in. Learning how to snack in a healthy way is important for recovery. Sometimes, too much snacking on the wrong kind of snack can lead to feelings of guilt and shame, frustration, and even create a dim outlook of hopelessness. Snacks are not supposed to be that way! If you are struggling in your #snack life there is hope for snacking in a manageable fashion- mindfulness.
Mindful explains that when it comes to snacking, “Mindfulness is a powerful way to bring balance into every aspect of how we eat. It cultivates inner wisdom- awareness of how our body and mind are reacting- and outer wisdom- making wiser use of nutritional information to satisfy your needs and preferences.”
Snacktime urges aren’t always spontaneous. Often times, they are routine. Our cravings for a snack might happens at the same time every day or it might be caused by the same trigger. Snacking is often a symptom of boredom and a sign of dehydration. SOmetimes snacking can be a coping mechanism for feeling sad, angry, resentful, or any other kind of emotional discomfort. Other Times, a snack is just a snack because a snack sounds so good. Mindful suggests these steps for approaching your snack with awareness- awareness outside of how badly you want a snack and how great that snack will be.
Pause And Breath
When you notice your snacky-senses tingling, the “rumbly in your tumbly” as one particularly famous honey-snacking bear is known to say, pause and take a deep breath. As you settle into your breath focus on your body. Try to pay attention beyond the hunger. What are you hungry for? Are you really hungry or is there something emotional happening?
Snack In Peace
After you’ve mindfully investigated what is going on beneath the surface of needing a snack, you can start to investigate what you’re craving in the snack itself. It’s possible you’re craving about a half dozen cupcakes, but that’s not really a snack, and it isn’t the best thing for you. Applying mindfulness to snacking can help you get in tune with your body to decide what it is you want or need. Is it crunchy and salty or soft and sweet. Is it fruit or is it candy? See what your body wants and then see what your body needs. You might feel like you need that leftover donut in the breakfast room but maybe you really want a super sweet piece of fruit instead.
Be An Equal Snacker Opportunist
There’s no need to bring discrimination into the world of snacking. Everything can be tried in moderation, including the techniques you use for mindfulness regarding snacking. Try different things and remember to do them with the nonjudgmental attitude of mindfulness.
Lakehouse Recovery Center employs a gourmet chef and private dieticians to work with each client to meet their specific dietary needs. Through experiential learning, clients develop mindfulness tools for all areas of life. For information on our treatment programs for addiction and dual diagnosis issues, call 877.762.3707 today.