How to Start Snacking Smarter

How to Start Snacking Smarter

Got a lot on your mind? Making the right snack choices is easier than you might think!


By: Amanda Palmer

Just when you get hyper-focused on the juggling act that is your day, there it is: the tummy grumble. And that’s the exact point when you’re most likely to grab a snack you’ll regret later. Instead, give your body the boost it really needs to keep going. We know that with so many pre-packaged preservatives and tempting treats in reach, it’s easier said than done. But with this know-how, you’re set to snack the smart way.

Do Grab These

Homemade Trail Mix: Mix together equal parts raw almonds, peanuts, cashews, golden raisins and your favorite dried fruit in a large bowl, and then divide into small plastic bags or containers.

An Apple a Day: Eat an apple whole or slice it up ahead of time. Add a few drops of lemon juice to help keep the slices from browning. A scoop of peanut butter brings it all together.

Veggie Sticks: Pick up some pre-cut vegetables like carrot and celery sticks for a crunchy break. Carrots are packed full of vitamins and minerals and the celery provides a high serving of fiber. Divide them ahead of time into baggies so the perfect serving sizes are ready and waiting in the fridge. Use your tiniest storage ware to divvy up hummus, peanut butter or another dip the same way. There’s the perfect pair, right at your fingertips.

Don’t Grab These

Meal Replacement Shakes: Because they fill our bellies, it can be easy to forget that these shakes and drinks are not really food. Liquid calories are not meant to sustain a busy body, and if you turn the label around, you’ll often find that they’re filled with preservatives and added sugars you don’t really want.

Protein Bars: Some protein bars actually pack more calories and sugar than a candy bar! Instead of grabbing a box of store brand bars, make your own or opt for a brand with the fewest ingredients listed on the label.

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Put the Brown Down: Toast, bagels, muffins and croissants are delicious and filling but not the best choice. These carbs are better in small serving sizes and paired with fruits and protein. Try not to eat them alone because they can slow your metabolism and lower your energy while you digest.

What to Drink

Water, Water, Water: Did we mention water? This substance that makes up more than 70 percent of our bodies can increase energy production and keep our brains awake. Seems like a simple fix, right? But in this case, it’s not too good to be true. So sip up!

Give it a Twist: Slice up a lemon and drop it in a water pitcher to store in your fridge for the week. Try downing a glass before you head out the door for a quick kick of energy.

Tea Please: Green, black, white, herbal or whatever you prefer, brew tea instead of coffee. While both beverages have been reported to decrease risks of heart disease and stroke, tea provides antioxidants without the added cream and sugar calories.

When in Doubt
Fruits, vegetables or nuts are the best way to go. Utensils are not required and cleanup is easy. Be prepared for hectic moments by stocking up on a solid selection of choices during your routine grocery trips.

If You Need a Snack While You’re Out
If you’re out and about, keep it simple. When hunger takes over, it’s easy to want everything you see. To avoid crazy bouts of hunger, keep some nuts in the car or your purse to help offset the hunger pangs.

If possible, adopt the habit of eating small helpings frequently throughout the day. This keeps your metabolism machine working at a steady pace as well as your stomach muscles. Having snacks prepared ahead of time will make the grab-and-go smoother and your body happier.

Tip: Check out our busy-schedule snack ideas for when you’re too slammed to cook.

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