6 Tips for Healthy Snacking

6 Tips for Healthy Snacking

(Last Updated On: April 19, 2019)

6 Tips for Healthy SnackingSnacking isn’t a bad thing. In fact, eating a few healthy snacks during the day helps to stabilize your blood sugar and keep your energy level high. It also stops those annoying cravings for “bad for you” foods. The key is to snack smart. Snack too much or make the wrong snack choices, and you may find yourself tipping the scales too high. Here’s how to snack right.

Plan Your Snacks

Stock your refrigerator and cabinets with healthy snacks you can take with you when you go to work or on a day trip. When you feel the urge to help yourself to the candy jar at work, pull out a low-sugar protein bar or a small bag of nuts instead. Keep a small cooler in the trunk of your car. When you go on a day trip, take along a container of cottage cheese, yogurt, fruit, sliced veggies and hummus and a bottle of green tea to the cooler so you won’t be tempted to grab a bag of chips at a gas station. Don’t leave home without healthy snack options.

Control Your Snack Portions

Keep your snack portions to between 100 and 200 calories. If you’re eating out of the bag or box, it’s easy to get carried away. How many times have you congratulated yourself for eating nuts instead of potato chips and then eaten half the container? Learn how to estimate portion size, and put only that amount in front of you. Even better, make your own portion-controlled snack packs to reduce temptation.

Don’t Be Fooled By Healthy Snacks That Aren’t

Be a label reader. Some snacks that sound healthy aren’t. Most veggie chips are primarily potato flour and food coloring with little nutritional value. Granola bars and bran muffins have a health halo too, but they typically have more sugar than a candy bar. When you have a choice between dried fruit and a whole piece of fruit, choose the whole fruit. A cup of dried fruit has 3 to 4 times the amount of calories as a cup of whole fruit. Plus, the heat used to dry fruit reduces vitamin C content. Choose whole food snacks whenever possible, and when you buy packaged ones, read the label carefully.

Don’t Make Snacks Too Easy to Reach

When you’re working, keep containers of nuts and other snacks in an area that’s out of your eyesight. Even better, lock them up in a drawer so you have to work a little bit to get to them. If they’re lying around in your work area, it’s too easy to snack mindlessly out of boredom or because you’re feeling stressed. Make yourself do some work to get to them. If you’re feeling stressed, bored or tired, take a walk around the building instead to get your blood pumping, relieve stress and boost your energy level.

Don’t Snack While You’re Doing Something Else

If you snack when you’re distracted by something else, you’ll likely eat more since you’re not as receptive to signals that you’re full. When you’re snacking, don’t work on the computer, watch television or read a book. Multi-tasking isn’t a good thing when it comes to controlling how much you eat.

Include Protein in Your Snack

Protein is filling, and it stabilizes your blood sugar and reduces carb cravings. Instead of eating fruit, eat fruit with cottage cheese or plain yogurt. Spread a little almond butter on an apple before eating it for added protein. Think protein and fiber-rich carbs.

 

The Bottom Line?

Healthy snacks keep your energy level up and reduce cravings for unhealthy foods, but choose your snacks wisely. Your waistline depends on it.

 

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