Sometimes it can be hard to stop snacking. If you feel peckish before or after meals then it can take a lot of self control to stop yourself from raiding the cupboards for a treat. There are a few ways to stop snacking or reduce it significantly so read this list and try a few techniques for yourself.

Eat breakfast, lunch and dinner. Eating three meals a day can effect how much you snack throughout the day. Research proves that if you have three regular meals you are less likely to be hungry later on.

Eat carbohydrates with a low glycemic index All carbohydrates are given a glycemic index value. The difference in the value determines how much of an effect it has on your blood glucose levels and insulin production. A low GI is around 55 and under, a medium is 56-89 and a high is 70 or above.

Foods with a low glycemic index (GI) will keep you full for longer and may prevent you from feeling hungry between meals. If you are unsure what types of foods these can be eat plenty of wholegrain bread, oats or barleys cereals and limit the amount of potatoes you eat. This is one of the ways to stop snacking by reducing cravings and is highly recommended by nutritionists.

Drink plenty of water Drinking water can also keep you feeling full for longer so don't forget to drink at least 2 litres a day. Whenever you feel a craving drink a pint of water, this should reduce food cravings for a while.

Stop buying junk food snacks- avoid the temptation If you don't have any of these snacks in your home then they will not be there to tempt you. Simple! Next time you go food shopping go straight past the sweets and crisps section and carry on.

Replace unhealthy snacks for low fat healthy snacks This for me is one of the best ways to stop snacking and feeling guilty for it. Replace sweets and chocolate for carrot sticks, prawns, low fat yogurts or anything else that you can think of. Snacking on these types of foods will not make you feel guilty so it will prevent snacking from being a problem for you.

Keep a food diary Keeping a food diary will allow you to see exactly how much you are eating each day. You will begin to notice what times of the day you are mostly snacking between meals. This careful analysis will help you generate a plan to stop snacking at those specific times.

Eating five small meals a day to reduce food cravings Instead of eating three meals a day, have five smaller meals. You will still be eating the same amount of food but at more regular intervals meaning you can prevent eating between meals.

Put a sign on your kitchen cupboard or fridge Write a motivational sign encouraging you not to open the cupboard for a snack. Any visitors might think you have gone a bit bonkers but if it helps your purpose then go for it. Here are some examples:

Do you really want to do that?

Nothing tastes a good as being thin feels

Have you not got anything better to do?

The best way to stop snacking is not to snack

How to stop snacking? Don't open this fridge

Put an old photo of a much slimmer you on your kitchen cupboard or fridge If you have an old photo of you looking much healthier and slimmer, stick this on your fridge. Everytime you go for a snack you will have a constant reminder of how great you used to look and could look again if you stopped snacking.

Chew sugar free gum to prevent you from snacking Everytime you feel a bit peckish chew a piece of gum. This works for some people but for others it may have the reverse effect and make you feel even more hungry so try not to overdo it.

Keep busy to avoid snacking If you keep yourself busy you may forget about snacking as your too busy doing something else. You could exercise, tidy your house, read a book or anything else you can think of.

So there you have it,11 of the most effective ways to stop snacking and reduce cravings. Try one or more of these suggestions and find what works for you.