If you’re trying to lose weight, you know the hardest part is that time of day when you normally reach for a bag of chips, donut or candy bar. It can be the time between breakfast and lunch, lunch and dinner or about an hour or two after dinner. You don’t have to skip your favorite time to eat. In fact, it’s healthy if you choose guilt free snacks. These are snacks that are relatively low in calories, but super charged with nutrients.
Keep snacking simple.
You can create gourmet healthy snacks, but often the best tasting snacks are simple. Buy some tree nuts, seeds and dried fruit and package up individual serving bags of your home made trail mix. You can even add a couple of semi-sweet dark chocolate bits to each serving bag. It’s a healthy combination that will keep you full, plus provide benefits.
Prepare veggies and fruit the minute you get home from the store.
Whether you’ve purchased celery, red pepper, cantaloupe, grapes or any other fruit except apples or veggie you can snack on or dip, wash it and prepare it for eating. Section grapefruit and oranges and have them ready in a bowl to snack on when you need a bit to eat. Make a healthy dip from chickpeas or Greek yogurt for vegetables. You’ll find that if they’re ready to serve, you’ll make them your snack, rather than a higher empty calorie cookie or a bag of chips. As you come near the end of the week, if there’s fruit left, serve it for dessert and use the veggies left over for cooking.
Apples and cheese or peanut butter make a guilt free healthy snack.
Slicing up an apple and topping it with a bit of nut butter or cheese is an excellent snack. You can use any type of nut butter, but peanut butter, especially the chunky kind, has proven to be the most popular. Make sure you choose peanut butter that has just one ingredient—peanuts. There shouldn’t be any additives. You’ll have to stir it before you use it, as it separates, but it’s worth the effort. Eating a thin slice of cheese with a section of apple is also filling and delicious. Both options provide protein, fiber and healthy fat to keep you full longer.
- Combine a bit of honey with peanut butter and then add wheat germ until you can roll it in a ball. Coat the ball with wheat germ and have these ready for snacks in your refrigerator. You can also add freshly ground flaxseed, chia seeds, dried fruit or oats for more flavor.
- Plain Greek yogurt with chopped frozen black cherries and very coarsely chopped walnuts added make a delicious snack. Layer the ingredients in a small half pint mason jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator for snacking later.
- Make sweet potato chips in your oven and lightly salt them. They’re an excellent alternative for people who love the crunch and slight saltiness of potato chips.
- The simplest snack of all is popcorn. You can even make popcorn in the microwave without the cost and extra oil of prepackaged microwave popcorn. Put a fourth cup of popcorn kernels in a brown paper lunch bag, fold the top of the bag several times to seal and pop it the microwave for about two minutes.
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