GOLD'S GYM BLOG
Post Image Header
Post Image Header

7 Healthy Snack Ideas for School, Work and Home

Food prep isn’t just for meals. Having these snacks ready will keep you from eating poorly throughout the day.

by goldsgym

Want to upgrade your nutrition in a big way? Your snack habits offer a major opportunity for positive change.

Although our meal intake is about the same as it was some 20 years ago, our snacking habits today mean we’re consuming many more calories. In fact, snacks make up nearly one-third of our daily calories, according to the USDA.

Many processed and prepackaged snacks are loaded with salt, sugar and fat, which make them irresistible to your taste buds but destructive to your waistline and nutrition. Instead of getting vital nutrients from our snacks, Americans are simply consuming more empty calories.

We asked Kritikaa Agnani, a registered dietitian and nutritionist at Gold’s Gym, to explain what we should be getting from snacks and to share a few healthy alternatives.

What snacks are for

“The main purpose of snacks is to tide you over,” Agnani says. “If you go more than four hours without food, your blood sugar is dropping, and it’s going to create a problem.”

Healthy snacking keeps your blood sugar more stable and helps give your body enough fuel for the day, Agnani says. “When you’re starving, you’re going to make poor food choices.”

To develop healthier habits, make over your snack drawer or shelf by ditching processed foods packed with salt, sugar and fat. Your new plan should be centered around snacks made with whole foods that haven’t been refined or processed with additives.

Agnani recommends using a mental hunger scale to control your habits. If you feel hungry, think of your hunger on a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 means you’re too hungry and will eat whatever food is in front of you, and 10 means you’re completely full.

“Even when you’re at a 2, you might go for the chocolate or the cookies. But if you have something healthy on hand, hopefully you won’t be tempted.”

The ideal range before eating is 3 to 5 — you’ll be in a better position to make smart decisions. To get into that range, don’t go too long (four hours or more) between eating. And once you’re in that sweet spot, make sure you have good choices available to you.

“You want to plan because unplanned snacks lead to grazing, eating whatever is in front of you and overeating,” says Agnani, adding that good preparation involves making sure you have a mix of healthy foods. “The main thing is to have protein or fiber in your snacks and not just carbs.”

Check out Agnani’s simple healthy snacks below.

7 healthy snacks

Try these easy, wholesome snacks for home, work and school. They taste great and will fill you up.

 


Freezer-ready smoothie mix

How-to: Mix handfuls of berries and spinach with protein powder and keep in the freezer until you blend.

Benefits: Great mix of carbs, fiber and protein

 


Banana and peanut butter

How-to: Yes, just spread peanut butter on the banana. But be sure to get peanut butter without added sugars or oils.

Benefits: Protein, fiber, potassium, vitamin C

 


Salt and vinegar edamame

How-to: Toss a cup of edamame with a tablespoon of rice vinegar and a pinch of sea salt.

Benefits: Protein, vitamin K1, folate, manganese

 


Apple slices with lime

How-to: Cut an apple and squeeze half a lime over slices. The lime will prevent the apple from browning and cut some of the sweetness.

Benefits: Fiber, vitamin C

 


Hard-boiled eggs

How-to: In a pan, cover eggs with enough water so they’re completely immersed. On medium-high heat, cover and boil for 6 minutes. Transfer eggs to cold water to stop them cooking.

Benefits: Protein, B vitamins

 


Frozen fruit pops

How-to: Blend fruit and put in popsicle molds. Try strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, watermelon or pineapple. Mix and match!

Benefits: Fiber, vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium

 


Hummus dip

How-to: Purchase or see easy recipe below. Serve with carrots, pita or peppers.

Benefits: Protein, manganese

BONUS! Kritikaa Agnani’s hummus recipe:

 

Read more Gold’s Gym stories:

Eat Healthier With These 6 Grocery Staples
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
Good Mood Food

goldsgym

goldsgym

Gold’s Gym is the world’s trusted fitness authority. We’ve spent over 50 years defining fitness and now we’re reinventing it. With personal fitness profiles backed by GOLD'S 3D scanning technology, both traditional and digital personal training options and new GOLD'S STUDIO offerings that go past a simple class; Gold’s Gym has evolved so you can transform your life. Experience change with Gold’s Gym.

Read More