Think Thin Tuesday: Snack Attack (Roasted Greenbeans)
Oral fixation- the dieter’s bane. Sure it sounds great in a kinky, dirty kind of way; at least it does if you have a gutter mind like mine but it also leads to excessive snacking that can cause pants to resist buttoning. Actually it is a pretty sexual concept; have you read the Wikipedia article on it?! Typical Freudian theory about over-nursing (mommy issues) and a tie in to manipulative personalities that are sarcastic, nail biters with a habit of excessive eating/chewing/oral sexual fixation. That’s a real turn on in bed let me tell you, I love me some Mommy issues.
I can’t tell you if compulsive snackers have a shared history of being nursed too long or too frequently, but I can tell you that there are two schools of thought to solve the weight gain problem.
1) Break the habit.
2) Snack smarter.
When it comes to breaking the habit, and I have no evidence to prove this, but I imagine it is par the course to getting a smoker to quit. In fact I would venture that smokers pick up the habit largely because of this underlying fixation with having something in their mouths so it is potentially even worse. If you consider human ancestry going back to nomadic tribes then snacking is basically ingrained in us. If you are going to be moving around all day, tracking and hunting, odds are you don’t want a big meal three times a day sitting in your stomach like a rock and weighing you down. It’s a fight against biology really. That doesn’t mean throw in the towel but I don’t think snackish behavior can be quit so easily. I also don’t think it should be. Grazing throughout the day, within reason, is largely believed to be better for us as a way of keeping your metabolism stimulated. Most modern weight loss programs advocate smaller caloric meals consumed at a higher frequency. What you aren’t supposed to do is sit in front of a computer at work for 8 hours munching on potato chips until you go home and sit down in front of a tv for another 4 hours eating a fast food dinner and more junk after.
Control is the first step so yes, stop the constant stream of food but give it up completely? Not very realistic.
That takes us to solution number 2. Snack Smarter. Ah now I’m a big advocate of this one. Some people can handle portion control for their snacking. I am learning, slowly, to become one of those people. I used to be a girl who’d sit there and eat an entire jumbo tub of movie popcorn by herself as a meal substitute. That wasn’t just a poor dietary habit, that was a dysfunctional one. Since I still want to get to eat the stuff on occasion I just make sure to restrict myself. Small bag, no added butter and I have to take breaks in between bites. It works and I get the satisfaction of my favorite food group without overeating. Did you know that the movie theatre industry started the jumbotron portion sizes we now consume? Some marketers realized that people won’t go back to buy a second small but when given the opportunity to upgrade for a minimal fee, people will almost always opt for the upgrade. Savings are a psychological tool that get us to spend more money than we need to and have the added side effect of making us fat, fat fat!
For those of you who still want to be able to consume larger snack quantities, another important element of getting healthier is choosing healthier options. For example , most people could eat celery sticks until you vomit and be calorically fine. This isn’t practical though as no one wants to eat plain celery sticks repeatedly. Few options exist on the market that are really ok for larger snacking consumption though a few do exist. I’m a particularly big fan of the Bare Fruit brand baked apple chips. They have a tart granny smith line and a yummy cinnamon apple bag. I can’t get the cinnamon in costco sized quantities sadly, but both are delicious and both contain literally one ingredient: baked apples. Well okay the cinnamon one has two ingredients because of the cinnamon, but still that’s it. No added sugar. No preservatives. Just apples, baked down into a crispy chiplike format and half to even as much as a third of the calories you’d get in a generic snack brand potato chip or cheese doodle.
I also love to roast greenbeans for snacking when I want something kind of warm and salty to munch on. Oh god. I said warm and salty in a post that mentions oral fixation. *12 year old boy inside me giggles* AHEM – ANYWAY : yes roasted green beans. They are yummy and you can add any variety of seasoning you want. If you are in the mood for something with some kick try adding cayenne pepper to the salt blend. If you want something with a lot of flavor, toss them in herbes de provence. Me? i like just plain, salted with a slight touch of a flavorful, gourmet olive oil. It’s simple, requires few ingredients and makes excellent snack fodder when watching the Falling Skies marathon or something like that….
Oh and by the way this recipe is for 1 pound of green beans and is around 260 calories for the ENTIRE batch. You know what that comes to in Lays potato chips? 25 chips. 1.5 ounces of chips versus 16 ounces green beans. Yeah. Quantity doesn’t always have to lose out to our waistbands. 25 chips sounds like a lot but let’s face it, most Americans are eating more than that when they watch TV.
Oven Roasted Green Beans
Cooks Magazine 2008
Pre-heat your oven to 450°F
- 1 pound green beans, stem ends snapped off
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Table salt and ground black pepper
Adjust the oven rack to the middle position. Line baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spread beans on baking sheet. Drizzle with oil and use hands to toss green beans to coat the evenly with the oil. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt, toss to coat. Distribute in one even layer. Roast 10 minutes.
Remove baking sheet and redistributed beans. Put back in oven and continue baking 10-12 minutes until the beans are dark golden brown in spots and have started to shrivel.
Adjust seasonings with salt and pepper.
Wrinkles aren’t always a sign of overzealous cooking. For roasted green beans shriveled exteriors indicate a successful transformation from bland and stringy to tender and flavorful
18g carbohydrates (with 9g fiber)