What Constitutes a Healthy Snack?

If you are on your way to creating a more balanced meal plan, you are likely thinking about ways to tackle your physical hunger. Often our meals are 5 or more hours apart, which is likely leaving you feeling hungry between.

A well-balanced snack strategically placed in the mid-morning, afternoon or evening can do wonders regarding balancing the overall physiological effects of hunger in addition to curbing cravings. Here are my three favorite things to keep in mind when creating a smart snack:

1. Protein, Fat & Fiber

a. Snacks that are highly processed often contain imbalanced nutrients and leave us feeling hungrier. Focus on including some protein, fats and fibrous foods for a more long-lasting effect.

2. Size & Texture

a. Snacks that have some crunch with some creamy, a mixture of colors and are bulky are often satisfying to eat. Satisfaction plays a key role in managing cravings

3. Convenience

a. Always smart to plan for something to interfere with our best-laid plans for snacks. Think of back-up items which are portable and easy to grab to increase your likelihood of actually eating something when in a pinch.

Some of my favorite other examples:

  • Hummus and sugar snap peas
  • Hardboiled eggs and berries
  • Tuna salad and an orange
  • Apple slices with almond butter
  • String cheese and carrot sticks
  • Pre-popped popcorn and pistachios
  • Turkey jerky and freeze-dried unsweetened fruit
  • Protein bars
  • Freeze-dried edamame
  • Greek yogurt and berries with slivered nuts

By Erika DeRooy, PRO Medical Dietitian Services Manager and Registered Dietitian

PRO Medical’s Registered Dietitians provide personalized meal plans and education to support you in making realistic lifestyle changes and in achieving your individual goals. We have experts in a variety of areas and provide support for adults, pediatrics and families.

Check out more tips, tricks and recipes from our Registered Dietitians here.

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