Despite popular belief that snacks are just calorie add-ons, healthy snacks can keep you full until your next meal and balance your hunger levels. If you portion out healthy snacks and prepare them for the week, you are less likely to grab something unhealthy.
We spoke with registered dietitian Carolyn Brown from goodnessknows about ways to practice healthy snacking.
1. “Snacks are an ideal place for energizing, whole foods that are going to power you through the day until your next meal,” Brown said. “So start looking at ingredient labels, instead of just at calories, and reach for the products with ingredients you recognize. I love whole nuts, seeds, fruits, and veggies in afternoon snacks.”
2. “Stash a ‘safety snack’ in your bag or clutch when going to an event and say goodbye to that cocktail party hunger monster,” Brown said. “Eat your snack on the way and you will find that eating those 100 calories earlier will save you hundreds of calories later.”
3. “Exercising is an essential part of feeling great, inside and out but you can’t run on empty,” Brown said. “I recommend about 100 calories in the hour before exercising to give you an energy boost. This snack should have a little bit of good carbs for fuel, such as fruit or dried fruit. The hour post workout is an ideal time for a snack with some protein. Nuts, seeds, Greek yogurt, or whey protein in a shake are all great options for muscle recovery.”
4. “If you find yourself on that runaway snack train where one snack becomes several, choose one item that is your snack for the week,” Brown said. “Give up the grazing and try to stick to 200 calories at snack time.”
5. “Quality counts,” Brown said. “Everything you put in your body directly affects your energy, your brain power, your mood, and even your skin, hair, and nails. So choose products like goodnessknows snack squares that are filled with ingredients that pack a nutritional punch and will help you feel, perform, and look your best.”
The accompanying slideshow is provided by special contributor Will Budiaman.