I spent far too long before I wrote this post debating whether to call it the more American “How To Snack Healthy” or go with my gut instinct, “How To Snack Healthily”. I’ve gone with my instincts (and my in-build grammar sensors) and said healthily.
After that short English lesson, let’s get on to the topic of the blog post! Eating healthily is something many of us try to do – myself included. But what about snacks? We all know that you should eat 3 balanced meals a day, but if you’re like me and love to snack, some problems can arise.
I’m in no way a nutritionist or dietician, but wanted to talk through a few positive and negative snack habits. These points have been gathered from both some research I’ve done and just from my own experiences.
- Make sure you still eat main meals. Snacks shouldn’t replace meals; this is something I find myself falling into especially when I’m busy. It’s a super bad habit!
- Go for fruits and vegetables. Fruit is relatively easy – you can have it whole, dried, or in a smoothie. With veg, think carrot sticks – they’re fun to eat too!
- Give nuts a try – as long as you’re not allergic to them! I love a handful of cashew nuts as a healthy snack – they’re good for you (in moderation!) nutritionally too.
- Find good alternatives for high-calorie snacks. Try low-fat frozen yoghurt instead of ice cream and dried fruit instead of sweets.
- Look at the nutritional information. Some supermarkets, like Sainsburys, colour code areas like calories, fat, salt and sugar. If most of those are coded green, you’re best off with those snacks.
- Get carried away with healthy snacks. If you want to lose weight, you’ve still got to consume fewer calories than you burn off. 500 calories from a healthy snack is still 5oo calories – think smartly about it and you’ll be fine.
- Become obsessed with one kind of snack. This is something else I have a tendency to do! Rice crackers are a good occasional snack, but if (like me!) you develop a taste for them they can be unhealthy in large quantities.
- Snack if you’re not hungry! If you don’t feel like snacking it’s probably because you’re getting your necessary calories and nutrients from your main meals.
- Obsess too much over the ‘perfect’ diet. Allow yourself treats occasionally, just not for every snack.
- Be boring; if you think you dislike a certain healthy snack, try it again! It might be years since you last had it, and your tastes change over time.
Eating and snacking healthily can help you to lose weight, maintain a healthy weight or simply improve how you feel about your health. I know that when I’m snacking on fruits and nuts instead of chocolate and sweets, I feel much better in myself. Then, when I do eat some chocolate, I appreciate the treat!
Do you have any tips for healthy snacking? Let me know in the comments!