Follow Mint Lounge

Latest Issue

Home > Health> Wellness > How snacking can be good for health

How snacking can be good for health

A new study shows that quality, not quantity, matters when it comes to snacking

A new study shows that snacking quality, not quantity, matters.
A new study shows that snacking quality, not quantity, matters. (Pixabay)

Snacking has become popular, with a wide variety of foods hitting the shelves over the years. There has also been much debate about how snacking affects health. Now, a new study shows that snacking can benefit health if the focus is on quality, not quantity.

In a study presented at Nutrition 2023, researchers analysed snacking data of over 1,000 UK-based participants considering factors such as snacking quality, quantity, and timing as well as cardiometabolic markers. The study examined how snacking habits were linked to cardiometabolic health, according to Medical News Today.

Also read: Snacks are the most popular item in the specialty food category, says report

The researchers found that higher-quality snacking was linked to better blood lipid and insulin responses. These snacks were defined as foods that had significant amounts of nutrients, according to Medical News Today. The findings also revealed that snacking after 9 p.m. was linked to worse blood glucose and lipid levels. However, more than quantity, the study indicated, the quality of the snacks mattered.

Choosing high-quality snacks over highly processed foods is likely to be beneficial, said study author Kate Bermingham in a press statement. Reiterating this, Dr. Elizabeth Raskin told Medical News Today that the findings show that food quality is important when it comes to health. “Diet is the cornerstone to health, and there are many ways to consume the nutrients that we need. Consumption of high quality, nutritious ‘mini meals’ may be a valuable adjunct to a well-balanced diet,” Raskin added.

This is not the first study to show that quality not quantity should be the focus when snacking. In 2018, a study published in the journal JAMA showed that people who reduced consumption of added sugar, refined grains and highly processed foods and focused on eating whole foods, without counting calories or limiting portion sizes, reduced weight, as reported by The New York Times. The research emphasizes the importance of informing people to not obsess about calories and instead focus on avoiding processed food.

High-quality snack foods are minimally processed. Some examples include nuts, seeds, dried fruits, fresh fruits, homemade hummus and carrots, Greek yoghurt with fruits, and apples with homemade peanut butter. As the studies show, snacking without worrying about the quantity too much but about what one is putting in their body might be a better approach.

Also read: The remarkable history of bar snacks in India

Next Story