Sunday, May 16, 2010

Mailbag Day 1

Day one of my week-long effort to answer the burning questions my readers have, and to keep things entertaining.  As of right now a couple folks have sent me questions, so I have enough for a couple of days, but I would love to do this all week, so I encourage you to send in any questions, or even advice that you have thought of in the months I have been blogging.

Today I will kill two questions with one answer and they revolve around snacks.

Maureen Allen asks:
"On days that you are not very busy, how do you keep yourself from snacking? How hard has it been to learn how to discipline yourself, and did you use any specific methods to learn discipline?"

The short answer to the first part of the question is that I don't, I just try to snack on the right things.  Snacking smart has been a huge part of my weight loss because it helps me eat less at any one time, which really limits the amount of calories I end up having that day, as long as I am snacking on the right things.  To wit, here is today's other query:

Amy Vorpahl asks:
"What are your snacks?"

There are quite a few things I use for snacks, but two or three that I eat pretty regularly.  My most frequent snack is fruit.  A mid-morning banana or apple really curbs my appetite at lunch and helps me fight the mid-day blues.  I rarely crash at 3pm when I have eaten a piece of fruit that morning.  A couple other snacks I eat frequently are hummus and salsa, both of which I have started making at home now.  With the salsa it really helps keep sodium reasonable and with the hummus it is just dirt cheap to do at home.  I only started making these recently, but here are my most recent attempts (this was my first jar of salsa):

Both turned out well, but I ran out of chilis when I was making the salsa, so it is not as hot as I like it, but it was still very tasty.

To answer the second part of Maureen's question I do try to keep my snacking under control, which can be an issue for me.  A trick I heard, and one I use, is to drink a whole glass of water when I feel like snacking.  If it is not thirst masquerading as hunger then it sticks around and I know I am really hungry, but that is usually enough to forestall any cravings until it is actually time to eat.  I also try to think of snacks as a chance to eat the things I should eat every day but do not always fit into my meals.  That is why I eat fruit so often as a snack.  I am not perfect about it, and sometimes I may have a few to many tortilla chips with my salsa, or a bit too much pita, but overall I feel good about the habits I have built, especially considering what snacking was like before.  Candy, chips, and soda.  Lost of them. 

Two questions down.  I am really enjoying this, so I hope even once this week is over you send me anything that pops into your head as you read.  I want to make my weight loss as interactive as possible.  Feeling like I was on my own in the past lead to failures, and the blog has been a huge part of keeping me on track.  Thanks, and I look forward to answering another question tomorrow.


  1. Absolutely awesome! I am so proud of you Chase! You will be in my prayers! I know you can reach your goals! WE miss you here in Houston. Love, Aunt Steph., Uncle Richard, Avery and Kylie