Snacking is here to stay and has become a fact of modern life. If snacking in between meals is part of your busy lifestyle, you’ll be happy to know that Sunsweet’s dietitians agree that snacking is a good idea. Provided of course you eat sensibly and stay on track by following these simple guidelines.
Enjoy What You Crave
But do it the smart way. If you’ve got to have something savory and crunchy, choose options that meet that need without a lot of fat and calories. If your snack-tooth craves something sweet, reach for fruit instead of candy. Want something smooth and creamy? Choose low-fat or nonfat yogurts instead of ice cream. You’ll get more calcium per serving and save big time on fat and calories.
Keep Size in Mind
Portion control is just as important when planning snacks. So, remember this is just a few bites to tide you over until mealtime. Try to limit snacks to about 100 calories. That could be 1 cup of celery sticks with 2 tablespoons of hummus dip or the sweet indulgence of savoring 4 Sunsweet ONES prunes.
Plan Mini Meals
Think of a snack as a mini-meal and an opportunity to add servings of healthy foods to your day. For instance, three or four whole wheat crackers topped with low fat cheddar cheese and sliced apple provides needed nutrients from the grain, dairy and fruit groups. Adding a protein source (such as cheese, yogurt, or nuts) will help tame hunger longer.
Make it Convenient
Since you are often grabbing a snack because you’re hungry and in a hurry, plan to have healthy grab and go options close at hand. Dried fruit such as individually wrapped Sunsweet ONES prunes can be stashed in your desk drawer, your purse or your car so that you easily enjoy something sweet on the go.
Think About Drinks
Beverages can contribute to good nutrition, too. Nonfat milk and vegetable juices are a liquid source of vitamins, minerals and in the case of fruit juices, they can be a source of dietary fiber. So, when choosing a beverage for a snack, think about its health benefits, too.