Not because it’s summer, it means that we should give up on all our hard work during the long winter and spring months. On the contrary- this is the time we should continue our healthy habits and in the process, show off some skin!
Some of the tricks, or strategies, I’ve found helpful for healthy snacking are the following!
1) First and foremost, snacking should have a purpose. Whether the purpose is to speed up your metabolism, avoid overeating, get a boost of balanced energy, control blood sugars, or help gain/maintain weight, make sure that your current snacking habits have a purpose.
2) A good caloric guideline is to not exceed 200 calories per snack. Oh, and a maximum of 3 snacks per day!
3) Plan ahead. Preparation is key to healthy snacking (and eating, actually). Helpful tips are packaging your snacks in advance by using reusable containers, sandwich bags, or foil wrap. And as long as you practice safe cooking- it’s awesome to use leftovers!
4) Redefine a healthy snack. Of course- it would be great if you could eat fruit and nuts as a snack, but when push comes to shove, maybe those options are not available (while traveling, stuck at work, etc). So, the next best thing is to eat a smaller portion of the unhealthier snack.
Below are some healthful snacks- all below 200 calories. These are just some ideas to get you snackin’.
The Sweet Stuff:
- 6 oz fat free frozen yogurt with 1 cup of fruit or ¼ cup of granola
- 2 rice cakes with 1 TBS nut butter and 1 tsp of honey or Agave nectar
- PB&J: 2 slices of reduced-calorie whole wheat bread with 1 TBS of nut butter and 1 tsp of jelly
- smoothie with 1 cup of rice/almond milk (unsweetened), 1 cup of fruit, and ½ cup of ice
- 1 medium banana with 1 TBS of nut butter and a few raisins
- ½ cup of trail mix
- 1 cup of fruit 1 with 12 almonds, 12 cashews, 20 peanuts, 29 pistachio nuts
- nutrition bars: Luna, Zone, Kashi, Kind
A Salty Goodness:
- 1 part skim string cheese with 1 small apple
- 1 cup of veggies (i.e. bell pepper strip, carrots, etc) with ½ cup of hummus
- 4 whole-wheat or 2 wasa crackers with ½ cup of cottage cheese
- 2 TBS of guacamole or ½ cup of salsa with 1 oz of sprinkled cheddar cheese and 15 to 20 baked tortilla chips
- 1 cup of edamame beans with salt to taste (do not pack tightly..)
- 3 cups of light popcorn with 1 tsp of olive or flaxseed oil and salt to taste
Inspired by J Schaeffer. Smart Summer Snacking. Today’s Dietitian. June 2012.