While it's fairly easy to find a healthy recipe for meals, finding health snack options can be a challenge. This is especially challenging when one has a SNACK-ATTACK.
I know I have a tendency to reach for the quickest, easiest thing. Here are a few tips I've come up with to avoid unhealthy snacking.
1. Drink Water.
When you crave a snack, stop dead in your tracks. Have a glass of water. We often mistake hunger for thirst. After a few minutes if you find yourself hungry, take the time out to prepare a snack.
2. Don't Grab a Snickers.
Sometimes, when we crave sugar, it means we need some protein. Try a chocolatey, protein infused shake! My favorite brand is Spiru-tein
(gluten-free and all-natural). I usually add a scoop of this to some almond milk, and throw in a banana. This satisfies my sugar craving through my taste buds and my brain.
If you're not really craving sweets, there are plenty of satisfying snack options as well. Here are some of my favorites:
- Celery Sticks with 2 tablespoons of ALL natural, crunchy peanut butter (who else remembers making ANTS ON A LOG? )
- Baby Carrots with 2 tablespoons of White Bean Hummus (this variety is a little milder than the classic chickpea based hummus)
- a few rice crackers with 2 oz. of Extra Sharp ALL natural white cheddar cheese (the sharp taste of the cheese satisfies a salt craving)
- Apple slices with a tablespoon of honey and a handful of raw almonds (the almonds prevent you from getting a blood sugar spike since they're a protein source. Avoid the roasted variety, because they do nothing for you nutritionally)
- Sliced Cucumber and Bell Pepper with Ginger-Miso dressing/dip (I like the Wasabi version found at Whole Foods!)
3. Pay Attention!
There's a theme involved with my favorite snacks. Pay attention and engage yourself in your food preparation. By paying attention and preparing a snack, you help your mind to be satisfied by remembering that you ate. By grabbing a granola bar and eating it on the go, you will not remember eating and you will therefore remain hungry. Also, take the time out to eat your snack without the distraction of the TV or even a book. Concentrate on every bite you take. I know this seems very "Zen" but by concentrating on eating your food you will eat less.
4. Keep it natural!
Not necessarily organic. This means, if you're buying a container of low-fat cottage cheese, make sure the ingredients list is as short as possible. Also, avoid processed snack-foods like store-bought cookies, junky corn chips and processed cheese slices. If you keep your snack items as natural as possible, they will satisfy you longer. Your body will thank you, and you'll eat less throughout the day. All of the above snack items can be found in Trader Joe's or a Whole Foods and most Natural Food sections in regular grocery stores.How do you avoid unhealthy snacking? What are some of your favorite healthy snacks?