Do Pre-Portioned Snacks Support Healthy Eating or Not?
Alas….100 Calorie Packets Aren’t As Beneficial As You Would Think
Weight-conscious consumers who choose single portion snack packets are more likely to gain rather than loose weight. How could this be?! While you want to believe that these 100-calorie snacks can help control your calorie intake, given the contents, your efforts would be better placed elsewhere and your calories, too. Consider what’s in the most popular single packets contain: cookies, crackers, chips and so-called fruit snacks. The nutritional value of these snacks is 100 empty calories. These snacks are deemed empty because they contribute energy without any valuable or essential nutrients. These carbohydrate-driven foods provide no dietary fiber, no antioxidants, and no vitamins or minerals to speak of, just calories. Anyone who is truly trying to improve one’s eating habits, or achieve a healthier body weight is best off learning to make wise food choices rather than relying on these clever single snack servings.
And, you are not alone. People who choose these single pack snacks hope it will naturally limit how much they eat, but often the little bitty bag isn’t satisfying so folks find themselves having another packet. In the end, more calories are consumed with individual snack packets, according to recent studies published in the Journal of Consumer Research. In fact, twice as much is eaten when single packets are used, than if a portion is taken from a large bag.
The researchers found that the planned purchase of boxes of single-serve snacks causes people to let down their guard. These individual servings allow people to think the challenge of portion control has been taken care of, and no thought is given to eating a second bag because it’s portion controlled too. While the individual packets are viewed as healthier, the tendency is for people to overeat.
Put more simply, by replacing each 100-calorie packet you might have eaten with a fruit or vegetable, you would be consuming 1/3 to ¼ of the calories. By simple math, if you traded one 100-calorie packet a day for a fruit or a vegetable, you’d be saving about 60 calories. This would spare you a pound of unwanted weight gain every 1-2 months. (1 month when you eat 2 packets daily.)
It’s far better to plan a healthy meal that may include chips or cookies so an expected amount is enjoyed with no thought for second helpings. Or, opt for the fresh peach or a lovely salad to fill up on instead.
Entry filed under: New Product Raves, Nutrition News, What's For LUNCH. Tags: body weight, Eating healthy, healthy eating, healthy meals, lunch ideas, obesity, snacking, Snacks, weight loss, weight management.