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How To Snack Healthily?

Wong Shu Lee  

|

  March 12, 2022

Do you snack? 

 

The primary purpose of snacking is to take the edge off pre-mealtime hunger without exceeding your everyday caloric needs. 

 

Mindful snacking -- or eating a nutritious, properly-portioned snack when hunger strikes -- boosts your intake of essential nutrients and health-promoting food substances such as fiber and antioxidants. Careless snacking, on the other hand, can easily take you over your daily energy requirements while providing little to no nutritional benefit -- a practice that can contribute to the development of a range of health problems. 

 

Snacking out of habit, boredom, stress, or frustration rather than out of hunger often leads to weight gain. Frequent snacking is also more likely to take you over your daily calorie budget and result in excess weight, especially if you eat energy-dense snacks or your servings are large. 

 

So, how should you choose your snacks? 

 

Foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, low-fat dairy products, whole grains, and legumes are satisfying and are packed with the nutrients, fiber, and protein your body needs, and they guard against sugar highs and lows, so you are less likely to succumb to your burger, candy, or chips. 

 

Snacking can be as simple as grabbing an apple, a handful of nuts, or a bowl of popcorn. Here are some snack ideas that are more filling. All of these snacks include fruit or a vegetable.

 

  • Fresh or frozen berries with cottage cheese
  • Fresh fruit skewers with Greek yogurt
  • Apple slices topped with almond butter or cheese
  • Yogurt and chopped fresh fruit sprinkled with nuts or granola
  • Homemade whole grain blueberry muffin
  • Apple berry crisp with a dollop of Greek yogurt
  • Whole grain English muffin with almond butter and fruit slices
  • Homemade smoothie or lassi
  • Homemade trail mix
    • Mix together dried whole-grain cereal, unsweetened dried fruit, nuts, or seeds
  • Chia pudding with unsweetened shredded coconut and pineapple
  • Energy bites made with dates and nuts
  • High fiber cereal topped with chopped fruit and milk or fortified soy beverage
  • Green leafy salad with sliced strawberries and toasted almonds
  • Celery sticks or cucumber rounds topped with tuna salad
  • Bean and corn dip with pita chips
  • Carrot sticks, whole-grain crackers, and cheese
  • Cherry or sliced tomatoes and a hardboiled egg

 

You can pack snacks in your bag for when you are on the go so you don’t go for unhealthy options when you’re hungry. Travel-friendly ideas include roasted chickpeas, nuts and seeds, and fruit such as apples, oranges, and bananas. 

 

Most importantly, stay hydrated throughout the day. You can sometimes mistake hunger for thirst. Make water your drink of choice instead of going for sugary drinks. 

 

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