When we think of snacks we tend to think of junk food. Cookies, chips, crackers, pretzels or donuts, right? Is it possible to be a snack lover and still eat a healthy nutritious diet? If you are willing to modify your concept of what a snack can be, the answer, according to information on healthy eating, is an emphatic yes!
Information on healthy eating and dietary studies have shown that people who eat frequent small meals rather than two or three large meals during the course of the day have better overall health. If you eat throughout the day, you are more likely to have better cognitive ability, more energy, and will sleep better at night. People who eat small meals and healthy snacks will also avoid that mid-day slump that affects millions and requires a cup of coffee or an energy drink to get you out of.
What is the reason for this? Information on healthy eating shows that smaller meals are more easily digested by the body and the fuel from food is used constantly through the course of the day. This allows the body to stay at a steady pace rather than the ups and downs many people experience.
Now that we’ve established the desirability of snacking; let’s look at the food aspect. Avoid all of the above-mentioned salty or sugary snacks like the plague. These constitute empty calories and don’t do the job you need to fuel your body for activity and brain function. Information on healthy eating recommends you eat snacks that are rich in nutrients and “good fats” such as whole grains, nuts, or seeds. One great way to combine all these types of foods is in trail mix or granola. This is easy to make at home and makes a great portable snack food. Add dried fruit to whole oats and sunflower or pumpkin seeds that have been sweetened with honey and toasted in the oven. Just a handful of this delicious treat at snack time will be nutritious and satisfying.
Information on healthy eating shows that you can add fresh fruit to cottage cheese or low fat yogurt for a delicious pick me up. You can even sprinkle some of your granola in yogurt for extra crunch. This yummy meal is also great for your digestion due to the fiber in the grains and fruit. Yogurt has healthy bacteria for your digestive system too.
Want something cold? Use whole fruit and nonfat frozen yogurt or fruit sorbet to make a delicious smoothie that satisfies like a meal. Information on healthy eating recommends smoothies as a total meal replacement if you add a scoop of wheat germ, protein powder or soy powder.
Take this information on healthy eating and use it to change your snacking habits from empty calories to delicious good nutrition for life.