Getting used to no snacks

No Snacks, no sweets, no seconds. Except on Days that start with S. Too simple for you? Simple is why it works. Look here for questions, introductions, support, success stories.

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Getting used to no snacks

Post by phosphorus » Mon Aug 04, 2008 5:44 pm

Hi there. I'm approaching goal weight from a counting-calories, 6-mini-meals-a-day type weight loss program -- I've got about 15 pounds left (out of a total 48 pounds I wanted to lose). Counting calories, and getting used to being slightly hungry by keeping those 6 meals small, worked great this time around, but I haven't been sure what to do for maintenance. I'm thinking about moving to NoS as my lifetime maintenance plan.

The question I have: Every time I try going without a snack between breakfast and lunch, or between lunch and dinner, I'm SO hungry and light headed when I sit down that I inhale my plate of food and barely taste it. So much for enjoying my food more. This is why I started the 6 mini-meals thing. I've never been diagnosed with hypoglycemia, but I tend that way. A small snack, on the other hand -- like "15 almonds" or "one ounce of cheese" -- eliminates the problem.

I know someone will ask if I'm eating "enough" at my previous meal. The answer is, I'm eating till full and stopping. I've worked really hard to kill the overeating habit and I don't want to undo all that work.

So I'm wondering... is the best way to get around this to declare that I need 5 or 6 meals? I think I only need a little tiny bit to keep the blood sugar from crashing. I'm thinking about "plating it forward:" putting my 15 almonds on the plate with my lunch, for example, and then saving just those 15 almonds till 4:30 or so. Is that too much cheating, or do you think it might work?

I'm asking a bit in advance, I'm not planning on starting NoS until I either reach my goal weight or get sick of my current program.

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Post by kccc » Mon Aug 04, 2008 9:36 pm

This is a personal decision. Nowhere does No-S state how many meals you should have (though 3 is the cultural default).

And I note that you have sugar issues, so DEFINITELY consult with your doctor in making choices. A message board - even one full of wise and knowledgeable people as this one - does not substitute for advice from a doctor with intimate knowledge of your health.

With that said, some "food for thought."

Pros for mini-meals:
Habit is the most important building block... and not having SO many meals that they blur into one another. You have a habit already established.

More meals = more food choices = more opportunities to overeat
It's easy to fool yourself when you eat in small portions - even if you do it at one meal (that's why "no seconds").

-Develop a "limited choice" snack/mini-meal menu to minimize the damage
-Eat the small meals "only if you need them" (assess at each snack or mini-meal time).
- If you want to cut down, do it the way you'd wean a child - gradually. First cut the snack you seem to need least. Wait until that habit is FIRM and pretty easy before trying another. (And you may cut down but not eliminate the number)
- Keep the mini-meals, but buy smaller plates. :) (Someone on here did some volume equivalents for different plate sizes - really interesting to geeks like me. Stephen Cooper, I think?)

Try different things and see what works best for you.

Best wishes.

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Post by phosphorus » Tue Aug 05, 2008 3:14 pm

These are all good ideas.

I have been feeling pretty confident that I have established the habit of the really small mini-meal, which is usually some mix of a few nuts, about an ounce of cheese cut in tiny cubes, and a few bites of fruit (e.g. 2 big strawberries, or ten blueberries, or a quarter apple). On the go, I'll often just eat about a dozen almonds.

It's not a bad idea to see if I can slowly cut down the size of the mini meal and see how often I really need it. The thing is, I usually don't know I should have had one until it's almost dinner time.

The other thing is -- maybe the lightheaded, inhale-the-whole-plate-at-dinner thing will go away after a while? Did anyone else start out doing this and then gradually get better, and able to enjoy their meal?

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Try H2Orange to stave off hunger--stay strong

Post by la_loser » Wed Aug 06, 2008 2:49 am


H2Orange is my solution to keeping from crashing between meals as I've posted in other topics. Here is the answer I posted tonight to another questioner in the Sugar Shakes topic thread. I'm sure some people are tired of my mentioning it, but since you're new to No S, I'm sure you haven't had a chance to peruse lots of old posts yet. I'm still seeing lots of ideas and info that I didn't see at first. :D

H2Orange is a drink that I use and have shared the concept with others that is explained in the post below. Since then others have commented on it on that thread and in a number of other topics as well. I really like it and have had nothing but positive results from it. I originally got the concept from another plan I had been on. So you could incorporate it into whatever you're currently doing. . . but I'm betting the more you investigate No S, you'll be joining us full swing soon. I saw a great quote on No S Dieter's blog that says it all:

"Motivation is what gets you started; habit is what keeps you going."
(Jim Ryun)

H2Orange-- A STRATEGY TO AVOID URGE FOR SNACKS first posted on June 20.

I did a quick search through the Everyday systems site for H2Orange and here is the result. Each of these posts refers to it at some point:

Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any more questions.

Good luck. :D
LA Loser. . . well on my way to becoming an LA Winner. :lol:

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Post by reinhard » Wed Aug 06, 2008 2:24 pm


You got some great advice here, just a few things to add.

1) you can drink caloric drinks between meals (100% fruit juice, whole milk, just not sugar soda). This is a 100% legitimate, vanilla no-s tactic. And it might be enough to satisfy your hunger. Plenty of calories, plenty of of sugar even with the juice, and plenty of fat and protein with the milk.

2) As you build the habit, you will stop inhaling plates. You're scared right now that you won't get enough. After a while you'll learn, very precisely, what enough is. The panic will subside and you'll really, deeply enjoy -- more, I think, than you ever did before.

And of course, talk to your doctor if you suspect you may have medical issues.


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Post by Dawn » Wed Aug 06, 2008 8:54 pm

There is no rule on the amount of meals you eat each day. So maybe you could start out with 6 and then try seeing how you do with 5, then 4, then 3 if it goes well. No rush, but only time will let you know what you really need and not just what you think you need. Habit is strong and if you have been eating something everyday at 3pm, it is going to take months to not want something at 3pm everyday. Not an 8PM has gone by that I don’t think about that 8PM dessert that I no longer allow myself, and I have been No-Sing for 6 months, but it does get easier as I go.

There are lots of little tricks you can do to help yourself out when the going gets tough. As Reinhard brings up - beverages. I don't know what I would have done without my sugar fee hot cocoa in lieu of dessert in my early No-S days. I also like the idea of limited choices. I remember someone used to resort to fruit if they were really "starving", but more times than not, the fruit didn't sound like it was going to hit the spot, which told that No-Ser that she/he wasn't really that hungry.

Just to remember to look at the big picture. What are you trying to accomplish here? Does doing this or that retail you or help keep you on track? Your track may not be the same as mine, but in order for it to work as a permanent solution there are some core things that you need to follow or the changes of success will not be quite so good.

Good luck to you, you sound like a smart cookie (mmm cookies - oopps, sorry!).

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Post by phosphorus » Wed Aug 06, 2008 8:58 pm

Hey! Somehow I missed that caloric fluids were allowed. I love whole milk (we get it raw, straight from the farm!) and perhaps that would be enough "snack" when at home.

Maybe I'll try switching to milk when it's convenient to have it (refrigeration) and only use nuts for a snack when I'm out and about and would have to worry about spoilage.

I will try the H2Orange too. I'm a bit skeptical of that one b/c it's just sugar, but it is worth a try. And needs less refrigeration.


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Post by gingercake » Wed Aug 06, 2008 10:55 pm

I have blood sugar issues and allow myself what I call a "medically necessary" snack if I can feel I need one. For me, being stomach-growling hungry at a meal is good. Being lightheaded and shaky is blood sugar bad news, and if I'm starting to feel that way I will have a glass of milk and half a banana, or half an apple and half ounce of almonds, or peanut butter on a rye krisp, or something. Usually if my main meals have enough protein, fat, and fiber, I avoid the shakes. But sometimes a snack is far the lesser or two evils for me. Otherwise I'll get a headache and become a monster bitch, and will still end up eating more than I would have if I'd had the snack. (All-liquid snacks don't seem to do the trick when I am having a real blood sugar crash.)

Since you've been used to eating mini-meals, you may just need to eat a little more at meal times than you have been. Keep experimenting!

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Post by CrazyCatLady » Thu Aug 07, 2008 3:34 am

I also noticed from your siggie that you are breastfeeding. That definitely adds to the number of calories you need daily. Some people adopt one No S rule at a time. And truly, the number of meals is somewhat flexible. It will be interesting to see how it all works for you, and if you end up having the six meals, or just three or four.

It sure will be easier for you if you end up with three! I have so much more space in my desk at work now that I don't need to keep all those snack choices! LOL!

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Post by phosphorus » Thu Aug 07, 2008 1:02 pm

Yes, I'm interested too to see how it works. The diet seems flexible enough to accommodate most health needs -- it should, for example, be safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding just by adding more meals. As I said, I'm sort of trying it out here as a maintenance strategy as I approach the last 15 pounds or so of my goal weight (through calorie counting).

Today I'm going to try having whole milk instead of solid-food snacks, making my 3 meals a bit larger, and see how that feels. I think I will continue to count calories for now because I'm not actually tired of it yet and it has really worked for me to lose about 32 pounds so far.

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Post by phosphorus » Fri Aug 08, 2008 12:52 pm

Here's a little update. Yesterday I tried substituting glasses of whole milk for those snacks I seem to really need (especially the midafternoon one).

I did just fine! No lightheadedness and I enjoyed my dinner (still need to learn to eat more slowly, I'm always done before everyone else is, sitting there twiddling my thumbs...)

Milk isn't too practical for being out and about (and practically every fast-food place where I might obtain some only sells 2 percent, yuck) so maybe I'll still rely on nuts and fruit and other solid things for those sorts of days. But it's nice to know there is a way I could drink some calories and still follow the No S lifestyle. :-)

Thanks everyone for the help.

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Post by gratefuldeb67 » Fri Aug 08, 2008 4:57 pm

Hi Phosphorous :)
Glad to hear the glass of milk did the trick.. Juice is more readily available probably.. Being a mom you must have those juice boxes! LOL
The main goal here is to become accountable without too much attention or difficulty for the amount we eat.
Big difference between a few conscious and planned mini meals, which you are thinking of as part of your breakfast or a dinner appetizer if you are dying, versus endless, unconscious, out of the bag, permasnacking.
Enjoy the freedom from point/calorie/food group counting and good luck!
8) Debs
There is no Wisdom greater than Kindness

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