Diet & Nutrition

Snack Smarter: 3 Tips to Building a Better Snack

Snacking can contribute to meeting daily nutrient needs and keeping your energy high throughout the day. However, an unhealthy snack can have the opposite effect. Here are 3 tips to help you build a better snack:

#1 – Motive: Consider your motive for searching for a snack. Are you stressed or bored? Or are you truly hungry and know you have a few hours before your next meal? Understanding your motive requires mindfulness, which can help prevent overeating and unnecessary snacking.

#2 – Mindset: Think of your snack as a way to meet your daily nutrient needs, such as adding an extra serving of fruit, vegetables, or whole grains. 

#3 – Satisfaction: Choose a snack that won’t leave you hungry. You can accomplish this by building snacks with more than one macro-nutrient: carbohydrate, protein, and fat. Of course, quality is important. Choose unrefined carbohydrates, like whole grains, and healthy (unsaturated) fats, such as avocado or nuts. Fat, protein, and fiber (from unrefined carbohydrates) can help stabilize your blood sugar and keep you feeling full longer. 

What Next? 

Choose an item from at least two of these groups to build a better snack:

Carbohydrate (unrefined):

Fruit (apple, banana, berries)

Vegetables (carrots, celery)

Whole Grain Crackers or Toast

Oats

Brown Rice Cakes

Protein:

Greek Yogurt

Hummus

Tuna

Egg

Cottage Cheese

Fat (unsaturated):

Nut & Seeds*

Nut Butter*

String Cheese*

Avocado

*Some foods contain both protein and fat.

Snack Examples:

Savory:

Rice Cakes with Canned Tuna

Hummus with Vegetables

Hard Boiled Egg and an Apple or Carrots

Sweet:

Pumpkin Energy Bites (see recipe)

Greek Yogurt with Nuts and Berries 

Fruit and Nut Butter

Celery with Peanut Butter

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