I’ve always been a snacker. I like mini meals and tiny bites.
Snacking can be great – I strongly believe that it is important to eat when you’re hungry. Food, snacks included, also play an important social role in our lives so I’m all for splitting a bowl of popcorn while watching a movie, even if I’m not really hungry.
Sometimes, my snacking starts to replace my meals, and that is when I start to have an issue with it. Like my mama, I turn to food when I’m stressed. So when I’m stressed out and don’t have enough time to cook, my meals slowly but surely turn into snacking all day long.
It would be one thing if this happened for a day or two each quarter but like most students, I find myself stressed out and busy a lot. Once I start to get into the snacking habit, it’s hard to snap out so it often continues for a few days after whatever was stressing me out is over.
It’s also much easier for this to become a pattern now than it was when I was living at home. I’m doing all my own cooking and eating many of my meals by myself, so I can eat however I want.
I tend toward healthy snacks, like nuts and dried fruit, but even healthy snacks are only healthy in moderation. When snacks have replaced your meals, it is very easy to mindlessly nibble and overdo it. I’ve also noticed that when I snack too much, I end up having far less veggies and protein than I would like.
A snacky meal every once in a while is nice but when it becomes a habit, I start to miss having real meals. In a real meal, all the components are designed to complement each other and I like the balance that brings.
I also start to miss really being hungry and full. When you snack all day long, you’re constantly in a middle ground between the two, which gets old.
I want to make an effort to avoid falling into the snacking trap this quarter, so I think I’m going to try loosely tracking and photographing my meals.
Some blogs, like Kath Eats Real Food and Yeah…imma eat that, do beautiful posts where they give a quick recap of all the meals they’ve been eating during the week. I would love to do something similar but as I’ve mentioned before, my meals tend to be pretty repetitive during any given week.
This is something that works well for my current lifestyle and although I would love to eat something new and different every meal, it’s not really a change I’m looking to make at this point in my life. That being said, no one wants to look at five pictures of the same salad so I’ll have to play around with it and find a way to document my meals without being too repetitive.
I’m also hoping that this will allow me to share more of the recipes I make that I haven’t altered enough to post as my own. I love trying new recipes to get some diversity into my diet (even though one of my friends calls this “cheating” at cooking) but I tend to follow recipes pretty closely the first time I make them and I don’t feel comfortable posting them here unless I’ve changed them around enough to call them something different.
I’m excited to give it a try and see how it goes!