Welcome back everyone and thank you so much for tuning into Wellness Week for my top 5 healhy, easy snack ideas over at Nashville News Chanel 4 More at Miday yesterday! If you were not able to view the segment I have added the full segment on my website under “Media” so you are able to view anytime. I also wanted to recap further on the segment and the idea behind healthy snacking along with listing all 5 healthy snacks ideas for you so you too can make them at home. Healthy snacking really does have a place in a healthy diet, we just need to know how to snack smart. Like I shared in the segment, healthy snacking throughout the day can help keep your metabolism humming, blood sugar levels stabilized , and help bridget hat hungry gap to the next meal. Skipping snacks or going long periods between meals with no energy can leave our belly and brain famished which often can lead to over eating at meal time and ultimately cause weight gain. I typically recommend 2 healthy snacks per day, meaning one mid-morning snack and one mid-afternoon snack keeping total calories between 150-200 calories per snack. Although I don’t recommend counting calories since that can be exhausting, I do recommend being aware of the calories in foods to help manage healthy food choices. All 5 snacks are 200 calories or under that I have shared. To snack smart and feel satisfied between meals I recommend combing 1 serving of a healthy carbohydrate with one serving of a healthy protein or fat source. Healthy carbohydrates (complex carbohydrates) like whole grains, fruits, beans, and vegetables all help provide quick energy and great fiber paired with healthy fats or proteins like nuts/seeds/nutbutters, light cheese, greek yogurts, lean meats, and eggs provide long lasting energy. Balance is always key when eating in general and when it comes to healthy snacking, with a little pre-planning and pre-prepping, you too can snack your way healthy.
So to recap and and expand a bit on each snack from the segment here are my top 5 healthy, energy balanced snacks that will leave your belly and brain happy!!
200 calorie or under snacks:
Snack 1: 1 medium sized apple or 1/2 banana + 1 tbsp. peanut butter or nut butter
-The apple or banana are considered 1 serving of a healthy carbohydrate providing the quick energy
-The 1 tbsp. of PB or nutbutter is considered 1 serving of a healthy fat providing long-lasing energy
-Excellent fiber and potassium
Snack 2: 3 cups air popped popcorn + 1 serving light cheese or 1 ounce serving of nuts.
-3 cups air popped popcorn is considered 1 serving of healthy carbohydrate (wow, that’s a lot) providing quick energy
-the healthy “sweet” topping added to the popcorn was a combination 1/4 tsp coconut sugar, 1/4 tsp cacao powder, and 1/2 of 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon….mix together well and sprinkle over popcorn. Coconut sugar has a low glycemic effect on the blood sugar so it does not spike blood sugar levels like regular sugar, cacao powder is full of antioxidants, polyphenols, flavanols, magnesium, iron, and fiber, and cinnamon can help provide blood sugar stability.
-1 piece of string cheese, baby bell cheese, or serving of any light cheese or 1 ounce of nuts would be the healthy protein or fat serving for long-lasting energy.
– air popped popcorn is a great whole grain that is filling and you can have more volume vs. chips, crackers, or cookies
-1- 1 1/2 ounces of cheese light cheese is 1 serving
-1 ounce of nuts which would be a small handful or approx. 28 almonds would be considered 1 serving
Snack 3: 1 cup nonfat greek yogurt dip + 1 cup raw vegetables.
-1 whole cup of greek yogurt is a serving, that’s a lot!!!! Make that your base for any personalized dip
-twice the amount of protein then regular yogurt or sour cream
-high in calcium
-a variety of colorful, raw, and sliced vegetables provides a low calorie, high nutrient combination.
Snack 4: 1 container of light vanilla or naturally flavored greek yogurt + nutritious toppings
-Instead of buying the pre-made yogurt with toppings already added, add your own healthy toppings like fresh berries, chia or hemp seeds, and coconut for healthy fat!
-Yogurt is really the perfect combination of a healthy carbohydrate plus a healthy protein all in 1 container.
-The berries, chia seeds, and shredded coconut all provide a burst of antioxidants, omega 3 fatty acids, protein, fiber,and healthy fat.
Snack 5: Choco-Cranberry Energy Bites
-These energy bits are great to make ahead and store in the fridge full of dense, healthy nutrition, 2 bites would be a serving for a quick snack.
-The recipe combing oats, almond butter, dried cranberries, mini chocolate chips, hemp seed, flax seed, and local honey make these little guys a fabulous burst of energy! Recipe is on the blog!!!:) So yummy!!!
To view the full segment please look under “MEDIA” on the website, hope this was helpful and thanks again for stopping by! Cheers to healthy snacking!!!