Healthy Snacks Ideas

by shawne on February 14, 2014

in Fab Foods

An old friend accused me of being “snow bored” today.  I sent her a very silly text message.  The truth is I was trying to distract myself from stuffing my face on what seems to be the 57th snow day we have had in the past month.  Okay, maybe it’s only the sixth.  On these dreary winter days it is natural to want to consume any and every sugary sweet we can get our hands on.  The snow day even drives the most fierce kitchen-phobe into a mixing, kneading, and baking virtuoso, concocting the sweetest and most decadent of confections.  Cravings happen even to the healthiest of us. Often, when a craving hits in the afternoon or the evening after dinner, we get the urge to snack. Snacking can be a bad habit to get into, because the snacks we choose are often junky, un-nutritious, and high in calories, sugar, or fat.cleaneatfeelsweet

The trick to snacking without piling on the pounds is to find healthy alternatives to the regular snacks you might normally reach for.

Usually, when we get a craving it is for either something sweet (chocolate!), savory (potato chips!), creamy (ice cream!), or crunchy (crisps!). Obviously, my examples are foods you shouldn’t eat all the time if you want to be trim and healthy. But that doesn’t mean you have to fight your cravings for the rest of your life. Instead, you just need to substitute.

Next time you get a craving for something sweet, why not try:

  • fresh, whole fruit
  • apples and almond butter
  • dried fruit
  • green smoothies
  • banana “ice cream” (peel a banana, freeze, blend in a food processor with nuts, berries or  raisins ,and serve)
  • dates stuffed with almond butter or other nut butter
  • organic dark chocolate chips or carob chips

For your savory cravings, try these healthy alternatives:

  • olives (they’re OliveFab!)
  • pickles and pickled vegetables, such as carrot, daikon, beets, and lotus root
  • tabouli, hummus
  • steamed vegetables with tamari or coconut aminos
  • freshly made salsa or guacamole
  • Sauerkraut (will also knock your sweet craving right out!)
  • salted edamame

Your creamy cravings can be met by eating:

  • smoothies
  • avocados
  • rice pudding
  • dips and spreads, like hummus and baba ghanoush
  • puréed soups
  • puddings made with silken tofu, avocado, or mashed banana
  • mashed sweet potatoes
  • coconut milk

Finally, don‘t cave and reach for the Pringles, when you can eat these crunchy (but still healthy) snacks:

  • apples
  • frozen grapes
  • rice cakes
  • light popcorn or plain popcorn (use coconut oil to pop in a covered pan)
  • carrots (particularly the sweet, organic baby carrots)
  • celery and nut butter
  • raw, unsalted nuts like cashews, almonds, and walnuts

Don’t fight your craving. Instead, listen to what it is your body wants specifically and choose the healthier option that will be good to your waistline.  You can still enjoy Valentine’s Day without the junk.  Enjoy something healthy AND sweet with your sweetie!  What is your constant craving and what do you think you can try as a substitute?  I want to hear from you below in the comments section.

 

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

johanna February 16, 2014 at 5:23 pm

I love this, says the girl who just snacked on plain popcorn! Thanks for this!

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