Stay on Track with a Snack
Updated: Nov 2, 2019
Healthy Snacking 101-
Between working long hours, exercising regularly, commuting long distances, and having an active social life, it can be difficult to prepare or choose healthy, readily available snacks to fuel and replenish your body. When choosing a healthy snack, make sure it contains optimal ingredients, proportionate macronutrients (such as protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats) and/or micronutrients (that mainly come from fruits and vegetables). The purpose of snacking is to help fuel your body in between meals or training sessions, or on-the-go when necessary. Options like chips, cookies, fries, candy, soda, and fast-food, are not optimal choices and will not help you perform at your peak potential or contribute many nutritional benefits towards your health goals! Healthy snacking offers a number of benefits such as improving energy, increasing mental clarity, fewer cravings for junk foods, keeping blood sugar within an optimal range, and an overall feeling of well-being.
Keep it Snack-Sized-
When reaching for a snack, be mindful of why you are eating it: to bridge the gap between meals, not to add an extra one. While our bodies need fuel, we also benefit from giving ourselves a break from constant digestion. Keeping this in mind, choose snack-sized portions that will bridge this “hunger gap,” as well as ensure hunger will arrive in time for your next meal.
Snacks should also be portioned out - often times hunger and fatigue can make it difficult to control the quality and quantity of snacks that are consumed. A large bag of nuts or a whole jar of peanut butter constitutes more calories and fat than an entire meal. Excess consumption can often lead to weight gain. Balance, moderation, and portion control are always key!
Use a System when Choosing Snacks-
Try this system when choosing snacks: choose one serving of a healthy, whole grain carbohydrate, 1-2 snack-sized portions of protein and healthy fats, and 1-2 servings of vegetables or fruits. Use this guide to create your own combination: