Having snacks planned and ready prevents those afternoon crashes.
In this months blog, we have a special guest blogger, Christina Wind, our summer intern, who discusses snacks on the go. Christina was at iLiveWell Nutrition for a month, helping us with numerous projects and adding so much fun to our office. We are sad she is onto her next rotation and look forward to seeing her continue to grow in her dietetic career.
by Christina Wind
Setting yourself up for success requires having a plan and some quick options ready you can quickly munch on that will be fulfilling and satisfying.
If we aren’t planning for those mid-morning and -afternoons crashes, we are more likely to reach for the sugary beverages or sugary snacks for a quick fix. Alternatively, if we have some healthy, easy options available, we are more likely to avoid those sugar crashes and have longer sustained energy.
The ideal snack is some kind of carbohydrate (yes, carbs are good and provide your brain and body with energy!) paired with a protein or healthy fat to maintain stable blood sugar levels and help you feel fuller for longer.
Below is a list of 10 easy options you can grab and take with you to eat at the office, in the car, or wherever your day takes you!
- Tuna + Crackers. Bring your own tuna and whole grain crackers or look into brands such as Bumble Bee or StarKist tuna and cracker kits. These typically provide about 6 grams of protein per serving.
- Hardboiled egg + celery. This is an easy snack to grab and go. Just boil and peel some eggs for the week and quickly grab and go later. Eggs provide about 6 grams of protein per egg.
- Cottage cheese + berries. Cottage cheese topped with your favorite berries is a great way to pack in some high-quality protein and antioxidants. Half a cup of cottage cheese provides 13 grams of protein.
- “Cheesy” popcorn. Popcorn sprinkled with nutritional yeast gives popcorn a cheesy like flavor but also provides a wealth of B vitamins, as well as protein. Additionally, popcorn is considered a whole grain and a light calorie snack. Look for light popcorn with little butter added or popcorn made with olive oil. About 3 tablespoons on nutritional yeast sprinkled on popcorn provides 6 grams of protein.
- String cheese + orange. String cheese doesn’t have to be just for kids! Pair string cheese with an orange or your favorite fruit. One serving of string cheese provides 7 grams of protein.
- Mixed nuts + banana. Look for your favorite variety of mixed nuts and pair with a small banana. A half cup of mixed nuts provides about 13 grams of protein, as well as healthy unsaturated fats.
- Hummus + baby carrots. Pack a small container of hummus and pair with some easy ready to go veggies like baby carrots. Hummus provides about 3- 4 grams of protein in 3 tablespoons.
- Whole grain protein bar. This is probably one of the easiest snack ideas. Just simply grab and go. A few great options that provide a minimum of 10 grams of protein: RX Bar, Oatmega Bar, or Lara Bar.
- Sliced apples + almond butter. The perfect combo of crunchy and creamy! Slice your apples ahead of time and throw in a to- go container with a couple tablespoons of almond butter. Two tablespoons of almond butter provide about 7 grams of protein.
- Greek yogurt with muesli or granola on top. Greek yogurt is another dense source of protein while muesli and granola made with oats provides whole grains and a yummy texture. Two-thirds cup of Greek yogurt provides about 18 grams of protein.
So there you have it – a list of 10 easy and healthy snacks that provide protein to help balance blood sugars and keep your energy levels up throughout the day! We hope this list was helpful and gives you some ideas when you’re planning out your week to stay on track.