Stop fighting the urge to snack. Snacking is OK as long as you are smart about it. Jessica DiCosta, a nutrition major at SUNY Plattsburgh, gave some great tricks on eating healthy. Eating a snack in between meals is actually good for the body. Going too long in between breakfast, lunch and dinner can cause blood sugar to drop. This will set off cravings you didn’t know you had. Resulting in overeating or bingeing later on. A nutritionist from Washington, D.C., Katherine Tallmadge, R.D., says, “The biggest cause of overeating is under eating.” Check out these healthy alternatives to snacking that will leave you feeling energized.
- Frozen Grapes
Instead of grabbing that pint of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream that is sitting in the freezer, throw a handful of grapes in the freezer instead, for a delicious cold treat. According to DiCosta, frozen grapes are an alternative to candy. Grapes are extremely rich in antioxidants. They can prevent heart disease, blood pressure and control blood sugar.
- Mixed nuts
Nuts are a great snack to grab on the go. Nuts contain high levels of protein, zinc, magnesium and calcium. DiCosta said this was one of her favorite snacks when she needs something salty. The body would be consuming the healthy fats that come along with nuts instead of the bad ones. Rather than eating a bag of trail mix that contains chocolates and candies, reach for some unsalted mixed nuts instead.
- Carrots and Hummus
Chips and dip is a typical American snack favorite. One or two is OK, but after a while the body starts filling up on the carbohydrates and sodium that are in both, and the body will later crash from it. Try opting for a few carrots and hummus in between meals instead. Hummus is a filling, nutrient packed treat. It has high levels of protein, fiber and iron. These are all components that the body needs in order to perform properly.
When hanging with friends, we all indulge in one or two chips…or bags. Instead of eating potato chips, replace it with popcorn. Air popped kernels are low in calories and just what we need to fulfill our chip craving.
5. Cacao dark chocolate
It is so easy to stop in a gas station and pick up a candy bar. If you are in need to fix that sweet tooth, try reaching for 50-70 percent cacao dark chocolate. This kind of chocolate contains antioxidants and none of the sugar that a regular Snickers bar has. Another good sweet tooth alternative is Brookside Dark Chocolate Acai Blueberry Flavors. They are sweet blueberries covered in the bitter chocolate that puts taste buds on overload.
It is completely normal to snack in between meals. It is actually a great way to keep the body’s metabolism going at a steady pace. Reach for any of the healthy snacks mentioned above to get the best benefits out of snacking.