Top Tips on Healthy Snacking
Throughout the day, whether you are at work or at home, there are times when hunger strikes out of nowhere. It is easy to just grab something pre-packaged, like biscuits or chips, to fill your hunger. However, these snacks, in the long run, can result in weight gain and are generally not really healthy. It is time for healthy snacking.
In order to curb those random hunger pains, it is best to go for something that won’t negatively alter the waistline and is filled with nutrients that the body needs. People seem to consider healthy snacking as being boring or bland. However, that is not the case at all. There are so many delicious and nutritious healthy snacks out there that can satisfy your hunger. Plus, these snacks can be taken to work as well and can easily fit inside your purse, bag, backpack, and so on.
Why Snacking is Important
People usually associate snacks with salty or sweet processed foods. Plus, snacking is often associated with mindless eating, and there are common misconceptions that snacking can’t really be part of a healthy diet. However, when done right, choosing the right snack can greatly help in weight loss and help avoid mindless eating.
Why Healthy Snacking Is Important
- It Keeps a Person Full and Appeased
Snacking can help you stay satisfied between meals. So, during mealtime, you are not as hungry and can avoid overeating. Certain snacks can help keep you fuller for a longer time as compared to other snacks, such as almonds or high-protein yogurt.
A high-protein diet is known to increase the body’s BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate). This means that the body is using a lot of energy, hence burning more calories, especially when you eat a snack that is high in protein.
- Body Composition
For someone who is working out to build more muscle, a high-protein diet is a way to go, since protein helps in repairing and rebuilding muscles. It can be hard for some people to meet their protein needs, hence high-protein snacks can help them reach their protein goals and gain more muscle.
When it comes to replenishing your body’s energy after a hard workout, a healthy snack is a way to do it. A snack that contains a decent balance of both protein and carbohydrates is essential to repair muscles and gain back the energy, respectively.
What Are Some Healthy Snacks?
In the market, there are numerous snacks that are labeled as being ‘healthy,’ however, the labels of these snacks say otherwise. Therefore, it is important to know how to read those labels and learn the basics to eat healthily. Below are the nutritious foods you can eat as a snack, either by itself or paired with other healthy foods.
Eggs are known to be the classic choice when it comes to breakfast. However, eggs also make a great snack that helps keep the body full and prevent overeating. Not only do eggs contain protein and healthy fats they are also filled with other vitamins and minerals. When it comes to portability and easy preparation, that is where hard-boiled eggs come in the picture. They can be prepared beforehand and taken to work or eaten after a workout. With a sprinkle of chives and paprika, the eggs get some additional flavor and zest.
Like eggs, cheese is another great snack that is filled with protein plus fat. However, it is important to keep an eye on the serving size, especially if you are wanting to limit your calories. Cheese sticks and cream cheese are a good option, but it is cottage cheese that contains the most protein. Half a cup of cottage cheese contains about 10 grams of protein. Cheese can be paired up with fruits and vegetables, such as bell peppers, grape tomatoes, pears, apples, celery, and many more.
When it comes to the best source of protein out there, meat definitely wins that category. For convenience and portability, jerky is the ideal option to obtain that protein. When buying beef jerky, the grass-fed option is the most ideal one. However, certain types of jerky are high in sodium levels, therefore it is important to purchase the ones with low sodium or limit the intake.
- Greek Yogurt
When it comes to a go-to high-protein snack, Greek yogurt is another great option. However, certain yogurts contain a lot of sugar. It is best to pick yogurt that contains less than 10 grams of sugar in one serving. The second option is to go for plain yogurt and completely avoid the sugar. Greek yogurt or plain yogurt can be paired up with fresh berries or other fruits and can be used in a smoothie as well.
- Veggies with Guacamole or Hummus
Guacamole is known as a delicious and great source of healthy fats. Plus, hummus is a wonderful source of protein that is plant-based, with a decent balance of fat, carbohydrates, and fiber. Hummus contains olive oil, which is a great source of heart-healthy polyunsaturated fats. However, both dips are high in calories, so you need to be mindful when it comes to portion sizes. These dips can be paired with bell peppers, celery, or carrot sticks.
Because of their fat content, nuts are known to be filling. Plus, nuts also contain a balance of carbohydrates, protein, and fiber. However, they are high in calories as well, hence it is important to be mindful about the portion size. When craving something sweet, certain nuts can be paired up with a little bit of dark chocolate, such as walnuts, almonds, or even mixed nuts.
Despite being low in protein and high in carbohydrates, fruits are naturally nutritious and filled with several vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber. Not to mention, they are also low in calories. Fruits can be paired up with cottage cheese, yogurt, or nut butters for a protein snack that is low in calories. Or fruits can be added into smoothies for a delicious and nutritious drink.
Tuna is a wonderful source of polyunsaturated fat and it is also high in protein, not to mention low in calories. Tuna can be eaten by itself or paired up with whole-grain crackers.
In the end, this does not have to be boring or tasteless. There is an abundance of healthy options out there. If you keep an eye on your portion sizes, then you have nothing to worry about. When done correctly, it can be a part of a healthy lifestyle.