How to Plan for Healthy Snacks

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How to Plan for Healthy Snacks

If you’re considering a weight loss program, one of your first assumptions might involve snacks: I’ll have to give that up for sure, right? Snacking probably won’t fit into my eating plan.

Actually, the opposite is true! Snacking will definitely be an important part of your weight loss program. Regular snacks will give you the energy to devote yourself to all of your responsibilities (including exercise). And, snacks can help keep your blood sugar levels more even, preventing crashes that make you feel tired and cranky… and trigger cravings.

Of course, the way you snack is definitely important! Yes, you’re following some fairly strict daily caloric requirements, so snacks must be portioned appropriately. Also, you know that anything containing lots of added sugar or white flour is a bad idea, for several reasons. So, what type of snacks should you be planning?

To stay within your daily caloric allotment, snacks should consist of about 200 calories. That doesn’t sound like a lot, but it’s enough of a boost to provide energy until your next meal (which, of course, is the whole point of a snack). The right mix of nutrients is important too; think protein, paired with complex carbs and fiber.

The following snacks are all easy to pack and carry, and fit into the above requirements:

  1. A piece of fruit, with one portion of string cheese or 1/2 cup of cottage cheese
  2. One apple with one tablespoon of peanut butter
  3. One half of a whole wheat pita, six tablespoons of hummus, and sliced cucumbers
  4. Carrot sticks with two tablespoons of ranch dip
  5. One half of an English muffin and two tablespoons of cream cheese
  6. One hard-boiled egg and a piece of fruit
  7. 2/3 cup of Greek yogurt with a handful of berries
  8. 1/4 cup of nuts

These are just some ideas to get you started, but you can see a pattern here. Most of these items aren’t readily available in vending machines (although convenience stores are getting better at offerings healthier options). It’s best to plan your snacks ahead of time, and keep them in the work refrigerator or carry them with you. Pick up some healthy snack options each week when you shop for groceries. You’re more likely to reach for those if they’re nearby, rather than giving in to temptation and hitting up the nearest drive-through.

And of course, remember to come see us for regular appointments. We can help you understand your caloric needs, and make recommendations for meals and snacks that fit into your weight loss program.

 

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