Does Snacking Help You Lose Weight?

The truth about meal frequency and hunger is not what you see promoted by many popular diets.

Welcome to the positive corner of the internet. Every weekday, we make sense of the confusing world of wellness by analyzing the headlines, simplifying the latest research, and offering quick tips designed to make you healthier in less than 5 minutes. If you were forwarded this message, you can get the free daily email here.

Today’s Health Upgrade: Living Longer

  • Weekend boosts

  • Number you won’t forget

  • Fact or fiction

Arnold’s Podcast

Want more stories from Arnold? Every day, Arnold’s Pump Club Podcast opens with a story, perspective, and wisdom from Arnold that you won’t find in the newsletter. And, you’ll hear a recap of the day’s items. You can subscribe on Apple, Spotify, Google, or wherever you listen to podcasts.

Weekend Boosts

💪Book We Recommend: In My Time of Dying: How I Came Face to Face with the Idea of an Afterlife

You might know Sebastian Junger from The Perfect Storm, War, or Tribe. This book tells the story of his own near-death experience, and his investigation of what he saw while his life slipped away in the hospital is fascinating. It’s a heavy book that inspires us to live in the moment.

💪Podcast We’ve Been Enjoying: Armchair Expert

It's entertaining and thought-provoking, with great guests and honest conversations. All that’s missing is an invitation for Adam to go on the show and debunk the endless wellness myths. 

💪Pump Perks: Free 8-Pack of LMNT

Do you need to improve your hydration in the summer months? Have you struggled with recovery after hard workouts or endurance during longer workouts? We recommend giving LMNT a try. When you purchase any LMNT product, as a member of the positive corner of the internet, you’ll get a free 8-pack of every LMNT flavor (we think the mango chili is very underrated). 

Number You Won’t Forget: 5 Servings

Research suggests that the more fruits and vegetables you eat, the more it might improve your mental health.

Just how much does it take to eat your way to a happier mood? Based on recent work and another study that followed people for 15 years and saw a 20 percent reduction in the risk of depression, a combined five servings of fruits and vegetables appear to provide the boost

We don’t know why we see the association, but adding a few servings of fruits and vegetables daily only seems to have upside. Even three servings daily are linked to immunity and longevity benefits. 

If you need a place to start, try sneaking them into a smoothie or a sandwich. Or, take a page out of Arnold’s playbook and try the soup he frequently enjoys to sneak in extra servings.

Fact Or Fiction: Snacking Helps You Lose Weight

For years, nutritionists have suggested eating small meals or snacks more often to manage or lose weight. 

However, research found that eating more frequently does not boost metabolism when calories and macros are equal. 

Some people even interpreted a new review as suggesting that snacking causes weight gain. But a closer look at the details reveals that the frequency of your meals matters much less than what you eat. The latest research reviewed seven studies and found that snacking led to weight gain over time, but there was a catch. The weight gain resulted from snacking on foods you typically associate with weight gain, such as chips, candy, and cookies. 

If you’re enjoying healthier options, research has found that snacking does not seem to promote weight gain. In fact, in a 1-year long randomized controlled trial, people with obesity who were dieting and exercising lost weight regardless of whether they ate three generally healthy snacks per day or didn’t snack at all. 

And because we don’t like overreacting to a single study, other analyses also found that “increased eating frequency has minimal, if any, impact on appetite control and food intake.”

Ultimately, there’s no reason to worry about snacking if you eat healthier options. You should choose the number of meals or snacks per day that help you feel most in control of your hunger. 

And that’s it for this week. Thank you for being a part of the positive corner of the internet, and we hope you all have a fantastic weekend!

-Arnold, Adam, and Daniel

Publisher: Arnold Schwarzenegger

Editors-in-chief: Adam Bornstein and Daniel Ketchell