Healthy Snacking

When I decided to start eating healthier, one of the most challenging obstacles for me was to cut back on my ceaseless unhealthy snacking.  Yeah, it’s OK to have an unscrupulous brownie once a week if you’re eating right and staying active the rest of the time, but I was whipping up desserts like this several times a week and munching on chips, ice cream, and candy bars without a second thought throughout the rest of the day.

My biggest mistake was when I tried to just give up snacking cold turkey… it didn’t work at all and I ended up way overindulging when I finally caved to my cravings.

It took some time, but I finally learned to be mindful of the calories, fat, and sugars in the snacks that I consumed and I now will usually snack several times a day, but I’ve learned to make healthy choices!  Here, I’d like to share with you some of my favorite, easy snacks.

Fruit

(pics)

Fruit always makes a good snack, just be aware that you should still eat it in  moderation.  I struggle with this sometimes when I get a really good summertime watermelon.  Fruits still contain sugar and carbs, but often they are also very full of fiber and make for a sweet, filling treat.

One of my favorite post-workout snacks incorporates peanut butter for some protein to help my muscles recuperate after a workout.

Sprinkle cinnamon over an apple and pair it with a plain rice cake covered in 1 tbsp Naturally More peanut butter and also sprinkled with cinnamon.

Be careful not to overdo it with the peanut butter.  Natural peanut butter like Naturally More is a great option because it’s high in protein and contains a good amount of fiber and healthy fats, but be mindful that it still contains a relatively high number of calories so you don’t want to eat too much as a snack!

Sugarfree Chocolate Jello Pudding with 50 pretzel sticks

Sweet and salty and only 160 calories!  While the jello pudding makes a pretty good stand-alone snack, I like to dip Rold Gold pretzel sticks into the chocolate for an extra special treat.  Delicious!

1/2 cup Wheat Chex & cup of sliced strawberries

Pretzel sticks & Hummus (regular or garlic)

Again, the key here is to portion everything out before you start eating It’s super easy to overdo it on any snack, so I’ll put one or two spoonfuls of garlic hummus into a small dish and take only a handful of pretzels out of the bag so that I can reseal the bag and put it away and out of sight.  For an even healthier version of this snack, substitute the pretzels with baby carrots, cucumbers, broccoli, or another vegetable.

100 calorie Orville Redenbacher Kettle corn single serve bag, popped and drizzled with 2 squares of a dark chocolate Ghirardelli bar.  After popping your kettle corn, dump the contents of the bag onto a wax paper lined cookie tray.  Melt 2 squares of dark chocolate and drizzle over the popcorn.  Set the cookie pan in the fridge for about ten minutes and enjoy a salty-sweet treat (evidently I’m big on those).

Some of my recipes that I’ve posted also make for good snacks (just don’t overdo it!), such as a slice of fruit pizza, 3 or 4 Chocolatey meringues, or 2 carrot cake cookies, just to name a few!

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