Snacking does not have a concrete definition. A study taken by Katherine Chaplin and Andrew Smith from the journal Appetite says, “Participants defined snacking as food or drink eaten between main meals”.
The average calorie intake during a meal is about 500 kilocalories leaving a range of 300-800 (daily total of ca.2000 for women and ca.2400 for men) kilocalories for those snacks between meals. Overdoing this daily allowance can cause weight gain no matter if the snack is healthy or unhealthy.
A healthy snack is one that leaves a feeling of satiation and satiety. Satiation occurs when the brain acknowledges that enough food has been eaten.
An unhealthy snack can actually be not eating or two pieces of white bread with a chocolate bar stuffed in – like a sandwich. This latter is a very popular four o`clock snack for Swiss people.
Here I have written about the 5 daily food stops we have here in Switzerland. You will see that we have two snack times: Nine-ish and four-ish. Snack time is big deal.
If you have kids, you’ve likely said it: Stop snacking or you’ll ruin your appetite.
All kids are different (as are adults) and like we aren`t always hungry at meal times our kids come with no “Hungry” button for us to press when dinner is served and the family is sitting around the table. Don`t worry about this though and don`t force food on kids – they will eat when hunger returns. Sometimes snacking on a carrot and a tomato is just as good as eating the whole supper meal.