- Nutritionist Jessica Sepel explains how eating fruit can affect sugar cravings
- She says people eating fruit as a afternoon snack often want to eat sugar later
- Ms Sepel advises balancing out blood sugar by choosing high protein snacks
Eating fruit as a snack is a healthy way to make breaks between meals manageable.
But according to nutritionist Jessica Sepel consuming a piece of fruit as a late afternoon snack might not be the best thing you can do – especially if you’re prone to sugar cravings.
In a recent post on her website, Ms Sepel said she had noticed some clients who ate fruit later in the day were also the same ones who tended to crave sugar at that time.
Australian nutritionist, Jessica Sepel (pictured) revealed how eating fruit as a late afternoon snack could lead to increased sugar cravings
While fruit is a healthy snack it can be a problem for some if they are choosing to have it later in the day (stock image)
She said as an experiment she asked those eating extra fruit to limit their intake to a morning snack only.
Next, they were asked to commit to eating a high-protein snack instead and consume it between 4-5pm.
‘If you know my work – you know I have a special interest in emotional eating and blood sugar balance, I also am so passionate about making healthy living sustainable,’ she wrote on her blog.
The nutritionist said eating at regular intervals kept blood sugar levels balanced which in turn helped with food choices and portion control.
Ms Sepel said it’s important to always include an afternoon snack but this choice should be one that’s high protein. One suggestion is for vegetable sticks with hummus (stock image)
The nutritionist explained that by eating the right kind of snacks between meals you can help your blood sugar levels to remain balanced (stock image)
Ms Sepel said often those watching their waistline feel this snack isn’t important and will choose not to include it or to eat a much lighter option such as fruit.
‘The problem is that I see the emotional and physical consequence of skipping the in-between meal snack,’ she added.
‘I have found that skipping this snack definitely increases binge eating episodes.’
As well as reduced late afternoon and after dinner sugar cravings, Ms Sepel said those eating a high protein snack also felt they had better control over portion sizes (stock image)
Jessica Sepel’s high-protein snack suggestions:
* Vegetable sticks with hummus or tahini
* A protein powder smoothie made without fruit
* 1/4 cup nuts and vegetable sticks
* A serving of Greek yoghurt with cinnamon
* Sugar-free protein bliss balls
She said those who embraced this change in their eating habits noticed results in their food choices.
As well as reduced late afternoon and after dinner sugar cravings, Ms Sepel said those eating a high protein snack also felt they had better control over portion sizes.
She said including this snack also helped reduced binge eating or emotional eating episodes. This is because balanced blood sugar levels can stabilise appetite and improve your mood.
‘When you start to balance your blood sugar levels – you don’t get these sudden hunger pangs that seem to take over mind/body control.’