Last week we looked at great lunch options (click here if you missed it). Let’s not forget the snacks!
Snacks are an important part of a good eating plan. They help keep your blood sugar and energy steady by making sure you eat every 3 or 4 hours; they take the edge off late afternoon hunger so that dinner is not a free-for-all; and they help make sure you’re getting all of the nutrients that you should.
Snacks should be about 200 calories or less. The better the ingredients, the better you’ll feel when you eat them. Strive for a mix of protein, complex carbohydrates and a little (healthy) fat.
- Energy Bars: Choose bars that have the most whole ingredients and the least chocolate coating. Good brands include Larabar, Kashi TLC (the chewy ones are more popular), Clif Mojo
- Fresh fruit, celery or whole grain crackers with a tablespoon of natural (no sugar added) peanut butter
- ¼ cup dried fruit & ¼ cup nuts
- medium nonfat latte (feel free to add a dash of cocoa powder if you like)
- ¼ cup hummus with raw vegetables
- 1 cup fresh fruit with ½ cup low-fat cottage cheese
- 8 ounces nonfat yogurt with 6 walnuts
- ½ cup high fiber cereal (Kashi Go Lean is great) with ½ cup nonfat milk
- 80 calories of dark chocolate and a small peach
- whole grain crackers (Kashi TLC crackers are good) with 1 stick of low-fat string cheese
- ½ cup nonfat frozen yogurt, plain (this means no added candy, fudge swirls, etc.)
- ¾ cup shelled edamame
- 2 slices low-salt turkey and a small bunch of grapes
- one hard-boiled egg drizzled with 1 measuring teaspoon of good olive oil and freshly grated black pepper
- one serving (about 20 chips) of Kettle Baked Potato Chips
Make snacks fit your schedule. If you’re hungry between breakfast and lunch, have a snack. I find most people are hungry between lunch and dinner, so that’s a great snack time. Maybe some days you’re having two snacks. If you’re making healthy choices, you’re hungry and it fits into your overall eating plan, snack away!