Wellness

4 Reasons to Choose Healthy Snacks

Young couple at gym choose healthy snacks after exercising.

Studies show that 91% of Americans snack several times a day. Many people reach for a snack to boost energy or to fill in for a missed meal. Snacking can be healthy if you make the right choices. Here are four reasons to choose healthy snacks.

Provide brain fuel

We all have days with unplanned events or a long list of things to get done. Often, there is no time to eat a nutritious meal. But you can choose healthy snacks to fuel your brain and boost productivity.

Plan for scheduling challenges by stowing some healthy snacks in your desk drawer, work bag or purse. Consider these options:

  • Dried fruit (without added sugar)
  • Fresh fruit that doesn’t require refrigeration, such as oranges, apples, pears, bananas
  • Jerky, hard-boiled eggs or low-fat cheese
  • Nut butter and crackers or trail mix
  • Microwavable soup (check the sodium)
  • Seeds or nuts

Control weight

If you want to lose weight or keep it under control, stock up on healthy snacks to help you make good choices. Here are a few suggestions:

  • 100-calorie snack bags, such as popcorn, nuts or whole-grain crackers
  • Low-sugar dried fruit in individual portion bags
  • Salsa and fresh veggies
  • Roasted chickpeas or soybeans in small bags
  • Hummus or bean dip and veggies in individual serving containers
  • Kale, roasted carrot or beet chips

Support health

People on special diets due to diabetes, high cholesterol or other medical conditions need to choose healthy snacks that are low in sugar and high in protein, fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals and key nutrients. A few examples of healthy snacks are:

  • Bean dip with bean chips
  • Cottage cheese with fruit or mini tomatoes
  • Yogurt
  • Snack kits with cheese, fruit, meat, nuts and whole-grain crackers
  • Unsweetened latte or cappuccino
  • Small containers of healthy cereal with yogurt or milk

Boost energy

Athletes and active people need to choose healthy snacks that provide fuel to boost energy throughout the day. Eating the right foods before or after a workout can provide new energy. Consider these ideas:

  • Jerky with a few pretzels and a glass of water
  • Fruit and yogurt smoothies or yogurt parfaits
  • Fruit and nut snack bars
  • Chocolate milk and a granola bar
  • Cheese, crackers and a small container of fruit juice with low sugar
  • Peanut butter with a banana
Choose healthy snacks like this young business woman eating tomatoes in front of her computer.

Learn about how eating nutritious foods can help lower the risk of developing cataracts and keep your teeth healthy.

Sources:
Cooking Light
HealthLine

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