Is there such a thing as healthy snacking?

Is there such a thing as healthy snacking?

Snackers, rejoice - because the answer is yes! Find out how to battle those cravings with good treats

By Deepshikha Agarwal, dietician and sports nutritionist

Published: Fri 4 Oct 2019, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Fri 18 Oct 2019, 9:52 AM

We all love to snack. Snacking isn't bad if one opts for healthy choices in the right portions. In fact, it can keep one energetic during high-pressure workdays. While healthy snacking sounds downright boring, in truth, it is not. Anything that is nutritious, low in fat and cholesterol and easy to digest counts. And choosing foods from more than one food group will not only help make the snack tastier, but also give your body a variety of nutrients throughout the day. The key is to get into smart snacking.

1. Conquer your worst urges by planning ahead of your meals. Use weekends to shop and stock some healthy snacks. Stocking up in this way can help you avoid high-fat, high-sugar snacks at the last minute. Remember, even a few fried chips can affect your waistline.

2. Too many cups of caffeinated drinks, such as tea and coffee, can be avoided through efficient planning. Such drinks are diuretics and can cause an increase in the excretion of vitamins and minerals from the body through urine. The caffeine in these drinks can also cause some people to experience agitation or acidity. A healthy alternative would be lemon or ginger tea. Laban, detox water and coconut water are good options too - not to mention, herbal teas that are easily available in the market today in various flavours.

3. Shop wisely by checking out food labels. Knowledge should always be welcomed and is fruitful. Opt for lean protein foods with low sodium. Try and select foods with not more than 150-200kcal per serving and more than 5 gms of fibre per serving. A protein and fibre combo will help you feel full and satisfied.

4. Eat mindfully. Enjoy the food you eat. People with sweet tooths should try to substitute sweets with fruits. Drinking a glass of water after your meal sends an indication to your body that the meal is over and thus helps you overcome your sweet cravings. Distract yourself, if you must, as boredom can lead to overeating.

5. Seek professional help. Ask your dietician or nutritionist how many calories you should have each day. They can also help you choose snacks that will help you maintain your calorie intake.

Healthy Snack Ideas
Easy to pack, these foods will also satisfy your taste buds on a busy day:
. Apple or banana slices and low-fat yoghurt with honey
. Carrot, cucumber, radish and celery sticks with hummus or feta cheese slices
. Grilled bell peppers with guacamole
. Energy bars or granola bars
. A hard-boiled egg with ranch sauce and some baby carrots
. Greek yoghurt with some almonds, black raisins, walnuts and flax seeds
. Granola with low-fat milk and fruit
. Tortilla filled with green veggies and some beans
. Soya or semolina (suji) rusks
. Flavoured soup sticks with a dip
. Peanut butter, low-cal crackers and vegetable juice
. Sandwiches (made with peanut butter, turkey, tuna or tofu)
. Small bowl of hot soup
. Salted popcorn
. Cottage cheese with wholegrain bread and greens
. Baked kale crisps

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