The Better Way to Snack

By: Madie P., Lead Lifestyle Consultant, Roseville Center

 Imagine you are sitting down to snack, and you have the choice between 100 calories of gummy bears and 100 calories of protein and vegetables. Both options contain the same caloric value, but each item will make you feel and react differently after consuming. Snacking can feel tricky when there are so many options among us. It can be hard to decide which is the best option with all the information available. Sometimes foods labeled as “healthy” or “low fat” are loaded with extra sugar and other additives. Have you ever seen “fat free” cookies advertised as a healthy alternative? These labels can be quite misleading. Snacks advertised to be low fat or healthy, like fat free cookies, may be high in added sugars and salt often leave us hungry, tired, and craving more. Making healthier snack choices will have a positive impact on weight management and overall health. The solution to feeling satisfied and energized after snacking is choosing the right food combinations.

The ideal snack would consist of quality protein and a healthy energy source. With the combination of more than one macronutrient, you will see the best benefits for your snacking solution1. Protein is an important addition to your snack because it works to reduce the hunger hormone called ghrelin which will lower feelings of hunger and increase satiety. In addition to balancing hunger hormones, protein works to help repair muscles and prevent loss of bone mass2. Good protein options include hard boiled eggs, Greek yogurt, turkey jerky, and powdered peanut butter. Combining protein with an energy source, like a carbohydrate rich in fiber will help keep blood sugar levels stable and provide more stable energy so you won’t experience that energy spike and crash feeling after you eat. Healthy carbohydrates include fresh vegetables, fruit, and unrefined grains. A healthy fat would also be a great energy source to add to your snack. Healthy fats are the slowest to leave the digestive tract which can help boost satiety at snack time3. Unsaturated fats like avocado or olives would be a great addition to your snack routine.

Now that you know the key combinations for snack time, it is time to work the magic! Try these delicious duos for a better way to snack:

  • Greek yogurt with fresh blueberries for a tasty and energizing mid-morning option.
  • Celery with hummus is an excellent snack option for something savory.
  • Apple slices with light string cheese if you are craving something salty and sweet.
  • A hard-boiled egg with nuts provides both protein and healthy fat for satiety that lasts.

For more information on healthy snacking, your Livea Consultant can help you during your weekly visits and you can explore further with these resources on Livea.com:

Healthy Snacking for the Whole Family

Healthy Snacks Found at Stores

What a Registered Dietitian Eats in a Day

How to Stop Late Night Snacking

Mindful vs Mindless Eating

Livea Snack Recipes

Remember, utilizing Livea meals for a snack is another great option for when you need something satisfying and convenient. Livea meals are formulated with the perfect combination of protein to carbs which works to check off all the benefits of better snacking! So instead of riding the hunger wave all day, remind yourself to pair proteins and energy sources for the best results. Happy snacking!

References:

“7 Ways to Snack Smarter.” Harvard Health, Harvard Health Publishing, 26 Sept. 2016, https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/7-ways-to-snack-smarter.

Vawter, Reed. “The Benefits of Eating More Protein as We Age.” UNM Newsroom, 16 Oct. 2021, https://news.unm.edu/news/the-benefits-of-eating-more-protein-as-we-age.

Montmayeur, Jean-Pierre. Fat Detection: Taste, Texture, and Post Ingestive Effects, CRC Press, Boca Raton, Fla, 2010, pp. Chapter 15.