Healthy snacks are the key to any health and wellness plan! When trying to control your weight, eating proper portions and making better food choices, healthy snacks are essential and key to your success!
People tend to believe that eating less is better! Quite to the contrary! Eating constantly throughout the day ensures your metabolism continues to function, and prevents extreme hunger at meal times, which can lead to over eating and often eating too much of the wrong thing! There are several reasons snacks are so important: First, When a person is very hungry, they tend to lose their rationality and are less capable of making proper food choices; second, when a person is overly ravenous, their portion sizes at meal times tend to be larger to satiate that hunger; finally, hunger sends the body signals that there is potential starvation/famine along the way and the body tends to store fat. It is for these reasons that healthy snacking is actually good for you!
Almost any clean fresh food qualifies as a healthy snack- it all depends on what you life to eat! One of the biggest obstacles I find that clients face when revamping their diet is they really don’t know what healthy foods they even like! I typically suggest a person write a list of their top five favorite fruits and veggies, and then start creating meal and snack ideas from this list. Keep in mind, a snack is NOT a meal and therefore it must be lower in calories, but it should be substantial enough to hold off extreme hunger until your next meal.
The following is a list of twenty of my favorite healthy snack ideas! Keep in mind this list is not exclusive and can be added to or modified depending on your personal preferences.
Top 20 Healthy Snack Ideas:
1. sliced cucumbers with a touch of sweetener (tastes like watermelon!)
2. Protein shake – with or without fresh fruit
3. Handful of nuts
4. Bell Peppers, whole like an apple or sliced
5. rice cakes with natural nut butter
6. celery with salsa
7. sugar free jello with non fat Cottage cheese (or non fat cool whip, for a treat)
8. any Fresh raw veggies, radishes are one of my favorite!
9. Apple with 2 tablespoons nut butters like Peanut or Almond
10. Cup of low sodium soup
11. protein pancakes or muffins (with or without carbs)
12. low sodium Turkey wrapped in a full Romaine lettuce leaf
13. Grapenut protein balls
14. Pro dessert, made into pudding
15. Air popped popcorn
16. Rice Crisps
18. Ezekiel bread or tortilla with tbsp natural nut butter
19. hard boiled eggs
20. KIND nut bars (QUEST OR PERFECT FOODS, are my favorite)
I typically prefer to have a source of protein with each of my “snacks” that are actually meals (one of my 7) but if it is between meals, I opt for veggies!!