We've been taught not to eat before a meal because it will "spoil our dinner". Now that we're losing weight, spoiling our dinner is exactly what we want to do. A mid afternoon snack or snacking while you're cooking is a good way to keep from eating as much during the meal.
Eating 'free' things like pickles, fruit or veggies or light or filling foods with protein and fiber like hummus will curb our appetite. Nuts and yogurt is a favorite snack of mine. The combination of protein and carbs keeps hunger at bay even longer.