Eating small and frequent meals helps to maintain sugar levels, keep metabolism going strong, and prevent overeating.1 Eating nutritious, well balanced meals and snacks may lead to a healthy weight, and to living a longer life.
Now, if you work in an office with a vending machine, you may be familiar with what passes as “snacks” these days. Big bags of chips, candy bars, and donuts may be tempting, but these foods are extremely unhealthy and can lead to a variety of health issues, and unwanted weight gain.
Being prepared and educated on eating healthy snacks can curb cravings for the bad stuff, and your body will thank you for putting proper nutritious food into it, instead of junk and fillers.
I have compiled a list of healthy clean eating snacks to stock up on. These snacks are void of food dyes, preservatives, additives. What they do have is vital nutrients to keep your body healthy and happy.
Clean Eating Snacks
Nuts contain unsaturated fatty acids and other vital nutrients that are tremendously beneficial for your heart health. 2 Eating nuts may reduce your risk of developing blood clots and may improves the health of the lining of your arteries. Some nuts, like Almonds, have high levels of Vitamin E and B, which may help boost your immune system and prevent cognitive decline. Recent studies have shown that regular consumption of nuts may actually help maintain weight levels, due to their high fiber content. Nuts do have higher calorie and fat levels than some of the other snacks on this list, but their fiber content may help you feel full longer, which may aid in healthier food choices later in the day.
Vegetables are comprised of many nutrients and minerals that our bodies need to function. Eating a variety of different vegetables may help ensure that you are getting the optimal nutrition possible. The CDC has a calculator that can help you determine how many servings of vegetables you should consume a day, and eating them as snacks is a great way to accomplish your daily goals. I, personally, am not a huge fan of eating raw vegetables by themselves. I love them roasted, grilled, and sauteed with olive oil… but if I want to eat them raw, I need some dipping sauce. I love to make my own hummus or clean eating salad dressings to dip raw bell peppers, carrots, broccoli, celery, cauliflower and tomatoes into. Cutting up vegetables on Sunday night and divvying them into small containers, makes it easy to grab for work on hectic mornings.
The old adage, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” is recited frequently, for good reason. Fruit contains many essential minerals and vitamins that may boost our immune system, increase our metabolism, and help us feel great. Fruit is such a simple thing to grab on the go, to enjoy at work, or any time of the day. Oranges, grapes, grapefruits, apples, pears, berries, peaches and bananas are conveniently packaged in their own natural protecting peel. I daresay it is more convenient to grab an apple from home, than to spend money on a vending machine purchase.
Other Healthy Snack Ideas:
- Plain Greek Yogurt with fresh berries
- Bananas and Peanut Butter
- Pickles and olives (in moderation)
- Veggies and guacamole
- Avocados filled with cottage cheese
- Fresh fruit smoothies
- String cheese
- Hard boiled eggs
- Raisins or other dried fruit
- Air-popped popcorn
- Homemade popsicles: just run fresh fruit through a food processor, then freeze!
- Homemade granola
- Dark chocolate (in moderation)
- Applesauce (homemade, or check ingredients if buying prepared. It should only contain apples)
What are your favorite healthy snacks?