You know that time of day that hits you like a train—when you are hungry and you simply can’t deprive yourself from eating something! We all fall victim to this at one time or another, but the key is to focus on healthy eating to satisfy those cravings. If you are somebody who craves sugar or salt or who just wants a little snack to keep you going strong, then you want to plan ahead so that you have what you need on hand at all times. The good news is that there are some easy snacks that can help you to refuel, gain some necessary energy, and also stick with the program all at the same time.
What you need to remember is that preparing your snacks and meals is all part of being successful in the long run. Though you may very well plan for your meals, if you don’t bring snacks with you to enjoy throughout the day then you are cutting yourself short on a major component of eating right. We truly need snacks, as we should aim to eat smaller meals more frequently throughout the day. If you aim to eat about every 3-4 hours then you are going to keep yourself fueled, and if you plan around healthy food choices then it makes it all worthwhile.
It’s ideal to combine food groups whenever possible, for that will keep you going strong and help you feel satisfied. Think of the time it takes to prepare healthy meals and easy snacks as an investment into your health, and so here we look at some great idea starters. Use these to get you going and then you are sure to come up with even more creative ideas moving forward.
Homemade Trail Mix: Instead of buying the pre-made and often super sugary mixes, take the time to create your own. A good homemade trail mix can incorporate some excellent sources of fiber, which will help you to feel satisfied and even stay full for longer. Try mixing some almonds, cashews, and walnuts with dried apricots, dried banana chips for crunch, and then mix in some dried coconut flakes. This is a great snack to grab on the go and it’s all within your control for a truly healthy choice!
Hummus with Veggies: This is easy enough to put together and it’s so delicious you won’t even remember that you’re eating well. You can get some nice single portion hummus cups or measure out your own, so just aim for about a half cup to a cup of hummus as your amount. Then mix it up with your favorite veggies such as carrots, celery, pepper slices, and even pea pods for some good crunch and a healthy snack you can enjoy on the go and fuel yourself with.
Cottage Cheese with Fruit: The key is to focus on your favorite fruits to add some real zing to this low fat dairy product. It’s already rich and creamy so it will feel like a dessert, and then when you add in the fruit it becomes decadent. This is one of those easy snacks that satisfy a craving in a really healthy way and keep you going strong the rest of the day, so it’s a true win/win.
Homemade Guacamole with Whole Grain Chips: You can make your own guacamole with just avocados, lime juice, cilantro, tomatoes, and a touch of sea salt. Find some good whole grain crackers for dipping and you have yourself a great snack that combines good fats, veggies, and whole grains for a winning combination. You will come back to this one time and time again because it tastes so good you’ll forget it’s actually good for you too.
Smoothie: The sky’s the limit with this snack and it’s easy enough to throw together before you head out the door. Mix up your favorite fruits like peaches, berries, bananas, then mix in some peanut butter or honey, and top off with spinach, kale, carrots, and some flax seeds for great texture. These easy snacks are great to prepare in advance and take with you, so you’ll never have to guess about what it takes to keep yourself going throughout the day!