Snackaholic Nutrition Tricks

My work bag snacks for today.
My work bag snacks for today.

Hello.  My name is Melissa and I am a Snackaholic.

All jokes aside, this is true.  My nutrition sabotage always occurs within my snacking habits, as full meals are typically pristine from a nutritional standpoint.  Nonetheless, the lil’ wee in-between hours when I snack…that is where the damage occurs.

When I say damage, I mean from a physical, emotional and general fat loss perspective.  Yes, my goal is to get stronger and continue to lose body fat.  However, I notice that I feel really gross, lethargic and emotionally crabby when I eat junk.

Let me now define junk.  Junk to me is something I consume that has no nutritional value or purpose for my body.  For example, pretzels, baked Lays chips, white bread, cake and cereal bars.  There is not much in those items that can really assist my internal systems to improve functioning, they won’t help build muscle or recover from a workout well, are not the best energy source and will only assist with fat gain, not loss.

Why do I eat those things though?  Because I LOVE them.  LOVE.  Nothing is more satisfying than to sit down and watch a favorite show after a long day and SNACK.

And because I am a human who doesn’t want to deprive myself of being relaxed and refuse to obsess on being nutritionally perfect, I will keep my snacking habit but have chosen to replace my snacks with more nutritional yet satisfying choices.  Look, I’m not going to say that I eat carrot sticks and celery dipped in hummus.  That is a great choice and I encourage that, but I’m talking some real, down and dirty snacks that still taste like they are junk but really aren’t .  Let’s dive into my snack bowl and check out my latest favorites:

  1. Artic Zero “ice cream” pints – with only 150 calories per pint, here’s what fun things you can do with this fun stuff:
    1. Make a sundae – take 1/2 the pint and place in a bowl; let it soften a bit.  Add PB2, oecans, carob chips, unsweetened coconut shreds and drizzle honey (all or a few of the aforementioned taste great).
    2. Make a float – recently, I filled a glass with scoops of Artic Zero chocolate and poured Diet Cherry Dr. Pepper on it.  YUM.
    3. Just eat it.  ***always let is soften for a while first — it’s not good unless it melts a bit*
  2. Yogurt and Honey – PLAIN Greek yogurt with walnuts, honey dew (optional) and honey drizzled through it.  Double Yum.
  3. Homemade Tortillas and Salsa – buy whole wheat or multi-grain (check the ingredients) tortillas; cut the whole pack into slices as if they were pizzas; spray with olive oil (Mr. Misto comes in handy here); salt them or season; bake for 7-9 minutes at 400 degrees.  The extras keep well in a tupperware container or gallon zip lock bag.
  4. Chili – I have found that munching on chili throughout the day really is tasty and filling; a perfect weekend snack that you can keep warm in your kitchen all day.
  5. Honeycrisp Apples – after much apple-exploration, I think this is my favorite snack apple.  They are generally a big apple, making it perfect to cut into big slices that will last you through an episode of The Real Housewives.
  6. Popcorn (homemade) – I can’t give up my popcorn, but technically, it is a food, raised on a farm.  So it makes the list!  Just make sure it is air popped or homemade on the stove to avoid chemicals and trans fats found in microwave options.
  7. “Real Foods” Brand Corn Thins – at 22 calories per thin, I enjoy drizzling honey only on them OR PB2 spread.
  8. Snacks For Work — the traditional favorites still prevail for worktime snacking:
    1. Beef Jerky
    2. Ostrim Meat Sticks (my new favorite — found at GNC, Vitamin Shoppe and Amazon)
    3. Quest Bars
    4. Kind Bars
    5. Homemade tortillas — they travel well and if you season with garlic powder and sea salt, no salsa needed.

So perhaps the aforementioned aren’t as convenient as grabbing a bag of Chex Mix at the local 7-11, but they are doable, healthy changes.

Please share any healthy snack options you have, as well!

Have a great week,

~Melissa

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