While researchers are divided about whether eating before exercise really promotes weight loss, a small snack before exercise can help to have a more productive workout since it gives you a quick energy boost. This energy boost can lead to a harder workout, which can translate to more calories burned.

The important thing here is that you find what works for you. Some do fine without eating anything before a workout. Some find that about 20 or 30 minutes into a workout they begin to feel a bit dizzy and even feel faint. This can be caused by a drop in blood sugar during a workout. Some experience cramping if they eat anything before a workout, especially in an intense workout. So you need to find what works for you and stick with it.

If you choose to have a snack before a workout, make it a healthy one. I often see people walking into the gym with a Slimfast, which is a horrible choice! Slmfast is loaded with sugar – it not only contains regular table sugar, it also has a list of hidden sugars including maltodextrin, Sucralose and Aspartame. Slim-Fast has more sugar than a Hershey’s Bar! Stick with healthier choices! A single banana might give you the boost you want without the risk of nausea or stomach upset. You might also try some cottage cheese, kefir, a piece of fruit, some peanut butter on whole grain toast or and scramble up an egg. I make a mixture of gluten-free oats, ground flaxseeds, ground chia seeds, then mix it up with a little Greek yogurt, some coconut oil and sprinkle it with cinnamon.

And don’t forget … stay well-hydrated during your workout because it will make your exercise easier and more effective!