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Healthy Snacking Tips

Updated on February 11, 2013

There's so much nutrition advice available, even when it comes to healthy snacking, that it can make your head spin! 

Really, it all boils down to commonsense and the words of Jack LaLane  who said,

"If God didn't make it don't eat it." 

If that's the only advice you ever followed you'd be eating better than
just about everyone in the modern world.

But let's face it, that advice isn't always practical or convenient, especially at snack time.

Most of us are vulnerable to eating junk food between meals. We're hungry, bored, or tired and looking for something quick.  Ready-made junk food snacks are readily available just about everywhere.

Being ready with your own snacks can help you get ahead of the temptation to grab unhealthy snacks. Taking control of snack time can take you a long way towards your nutrition and weight goals. All it takes is a little planning and preparation.

So how can you include more natural unprocessed foods in your diet without being a slave to the kitchen or the market?  How can you include healthy snacks in your diet that are satisfying and keep you away from the donuts and vending machines?

It's a lot easier than you think!

Try these healthy, on the go snacks that you can enjoy anywhere. Just like with junk food treats, when your healthy snacks are ready to go and in easy reach, you'll be much more likely to choose them.

Simple Healthy On-the-Go Snack Ideas

1 - Eat whole fruits instead of drinking overly processed juice or canned fruit. Shop the perimeter of the store where you'll find apples, grapes, cherries,pears, bananas, and all kinds of berries. One or two servings of fruit a day make a great, healthy snack that can easily be carried in your purse, lunch bag or pocket.

2 - Stir some fresh or thawed blueberries and a dash of stevia into a container of plain organic yogurt for a healthier alternative to chemically sweetened or sugar-laden commercial yogurts. Try Greek yogurt for a lower-carb creamy treat. Quality frozen fruits or berries can be mixed into smoothies, yogurt or lightly cooked in desserts.

3 - Baby carrots, celery, pepper strips and chopped vegetables travel well in a plastic baggie and give you some crunch. You can cut these up yourself or buy them ready to go in the grocery store.

4 - An ounce of cheese or several almonds will add some protein and healthy fat to a vegetable, grain or fruit snack to even out your blood sugar and keep you full longer. Or forego the carbohydrates and enjoy a great big handful of pistachio nuts. They are fun to shell, very healthy, and tasty too!

5 - Trail mix makes a satisfying, healthy snack. Many varietys are available. It's easy to make your own too. To make your own:

Combine a cup each of your favorite nuts, seeds and chopped dried fruits in a bowl. Choose from almonds, cashews, walnuts, pecan and macademia nuts. Dried fruits are readily available. Unsulfured fruits don't look pretty, but they are a healthier choice. Try bananas, cranberries, raisins, pineapple, and papayas. Toss in a handful (or two) of 60-70% dark chocolate chips to make this a real treat. Put individual 1/4 cup servings into small zippered baggies for easy traveling and portion control.

6 - Peanut butter roll-ups. Spread a tablespoon of organic peanut butter onto a thin whole grain wrap. Add a thin smear of jelly or honey if you like. Roll up the wrap, cut into bite size pieces and store in a baggie.

7 - Have a 100 calorie pack of whole grain crisps with foil wrapped light cheese.

8 - Enjoy a hard-boiled egg. These store well in the refrigerator so you can make them ahead. They are pretty sturdy and can survive for a few hours in your briefcase or purse.

9 - Just about any small serving of healthy meal food you like can double as a healthy snack.

10- Fill a big baggie with air-popped popcorn. Sprinkle on some seasoning. Add a few peanuts or nuts. Avoid the ready made bags, the oils are rancid and quite unhealthy.

If you find yourself hungry and out somewhere without a snack, choose the best of what's available. A donut with covered with nuts (although definitely not healthy) is better than a cream filled iced donut. A snickers bar is better than a milky way, again because of the nuts. Baked potato chips are better than deep-fried ones.

Choosing healthy snacking provides nutrition and burst of sustained energy. They take the edge off your hunger. When you're not hungry between meals, you're less likely to overeat and make poor food choices.


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