Smart and Healthy Snack Hacks

Do you ever find yourself looking for a mid-afternoon snack, but have no idea what to choose? If you answered yes you are not alone! Snacking is not always a bad thing, and if chosen wisely it can help keep you on a healthy path. It is important to recognize that not all snacks are created equally, check out these healthy hacks for creating smart snacks. Want to know more? Visit with our dietitian today to learn how you can better fit healthy eating into your everyday life!

Make it Balanced

When it comes to smart snacking, aim for something containing all 3 macronutrients: carbohydrate, protein, and healthy fat.  When a snack meets all of these components it can better help keep stable blood sugar levels and keep you full for longer periods. Examples of balanced snacks include an apple with 1-2 tbsp of peanut butter, veggies and hummus, or a serving of trail mix containing nuts and dried fruit. Adding a balanced snack in between meals can be a great way to make sure you don’t go into lunch or dinner completely starving, and it can be a great tool in keeping your serving sizes smaller!

All Day Breakfast Snacks

It may be later in the afternoon or evening, but it is never too late to revisit healthy breakfast foods. Incorporating snacks such as whole-grain toast with avocado or a low-fat jam, plain Greek yogurt with some fruit, or low-fat granola can be a great choice!

Smart Snack Sizes

While we know eating snacks throughout the day can assist with weight management, it is important to keep in mind an appropriate snack size. Snacks should fall anywhere between 150-250 calories and can be slightly more for those who are extremely active. A little bit can go a long way to help us get through the day with adequate energy and nutrient intake! If you are still feeling hungry after your snack, be sure to follow it up with adequate hydration to keep your body functioning in its optimal state.

Mindfulness Matters

One of the biggest components involved with smart snacking is mindfulness. If you are distracted while having a snack there is a higher chance of consuming more than originally desired. Trying tips such as only eating in the kitchen away from TVs or electronics can help keep you more present while you eat and avoid overdoing it. If you are snacking at work try and give yourself a few minutes to push your chair away from the desk rather than eating while sending e-mails or working on a project.  Mindful eating takes practice and won’t be perfect every time, but that’s okay! Just keep practicing being present in the moment and it will get easier to enjoy a healthy snack that will keep you on track!

Putting it all Together

Using all of these hacks, check out some of these great snack ideas to help keep you full and satisfied!

  • Apple and peanut butter or a low-fat cheese
  • Low-fat cottage cheese with flax seeds or fruit
  • Mixed nuts
  • Whole-grain crackers and avocado
  • Celery with peanut butter and raisins
  • A hard-boiled egg with fruit
  • Edamame
  • And so much more!