March is Nutrition Month! It’s important to remember to eat a well-balanced diet that includes the major food groups: vegetables, fruits, grains, and protein. Our bodies are our temple and we should treat them right – we only get one!
KPG Healthcare knows the power of snacks – we love them. However, snacking can be dangerous when you have chips, salty foods or even fatty foods laying around the office. We decided to break down some healthy snack options by Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts, and Alternatives.
Fresh fruit is a great choice to have in-between meals or having some dried fruit can be a great substitution. If you choose to bring dried fruit, make sure that it’s not covered in a layer of sugar!
If eating fruit alone is not your vibe, you can also get creative with how you serve your fruit for lunch.
Apple Cookies are a great example of changing things up from normal whole fruit. Cut your apples into thin slices, layer it up with some peanut butter to keep you full until your next meal, and you have the choice of sprinkling some healthy toppings like coconut flakes, dark chocolate bits, nuts, and/or cinnamon!
If apples aren’t your taste, you can substitute it with bananas too! Bananas are a wonderful addition in oatmeal, with peanut butter, in smoothies, or with more nuts! Bananas contain potassium and while it doesn’t contain as much potassium as leafy greens, its sure beats eating spinach by itself.
Vegetables are another great snack choice for those who like to cut their sugar intake. Vegetables should be eaten every day for your daily nutrients such as fiber, vitamins, protein, and potassium.
We know vegetables may not be everyone’s favorite snack, but it can help with anyone looking to work on that summer body!
Celery Sticks with Peanut Butter is always a go-to snack that keeps you full and keeps your calorie intake low. Eating celery is close to eating zero calories plus with the added peanut butter, you’ll stay content until your next meal. Again, you can always spice up your celery sticks and peanut butter by adding some nuts, dried fruit, or spices on top.
Celery may not be everyone’s #1 pick, so we also recommend Carrot Sticks with Hummus! Another easy snack that is both healthy and easy to prepare the night before. Hummus is great to ease your way into plant-based foods with chickpeas being the main ingredient. Chickpeas are another great source of protein packing in 10g of protein per cup AND 10g of dietary fiber. That’s a winner in our book!
Nuts are a fantastic option for healthy snacks. Nuts come in all shapes in sizes from walnuts to peanuts, cashews to almonds. Nuts can provide a variety of nutrients like healthy fats, fiber, and protein. Nuts may also reduce the risk factors for metabolic syndromes, such as high blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Homemade Trail Mix is a great way of combining a variety of nuts with some added dried fruits and/or chocolate bits. Trail mix can be combined with a variety of other dried fruits, nuts, vegetable chips, and granola – to name a few.
Nuts such as almonds, pecans, cashews, and pistachios can also be used with some other foods like salads, yogurt, smoothies, or you can eat them alone! Just make sure there isn’t too much salt because that would defeat the purpose of healthy snacking.
When we say alternative snacks we actually mean snacks such as protein bars/shakes, yogurt, oatmeal, and anything else which isn’t listed above.
Alternative snacks are great for quick and on-the-go situations, but these types of snacks can also be very dangerous. It’s important to look at the nutrition labels when purchasing alternative/quick snacks.
For example, Protein Shakes from Odwalla or something similar contains an enormous amount of sugar and sodium. One of those Odwalla Protein Shakes contains 2 servings instead of one, and that can hurt you more than help.
Some great alternative snacks are Quest Nutrition Bars, Kind Bars, Nature’s Path Qi’a Bars, or you can even make your granola bars!
KPG Healthcare cares about your nutrition but we also care about what you put into your body. With these helpful snack ideas for your daily activities or workplace, you’ll be eating a balanced diet in no time!
If you’re interested in finding more delicious snack ideas, check out this link from SnackNation!