The words “weight-loss” and “snacks” often appear in the same sentence.
And they may spark thoughts such as “tasteless,” “cardboard,” or “completely unsatisfying.”
Let me give you my best weight-loss friendly snacks that are both nutritious and delicious!
What’s my criteria you ask?
They have to be nutrient-dense whole foods, where a little goes a long way. They must be foods that contain protein and/or fiber.
1 – Nuts
It’s true – nuts contain calories and fat, but they are not fattening!
I’m not talking about the “honey roasted” ones, of course. Those probably are fattening.
And eating too much of a good thing may also be fattening. Nuts do contain good, healthy fats that can help fill you up.
Studies show that people who eat nuts tend to be healthier and leaner.
Nuts contain both protein and fiber. Taking only a small amount may make you feel satisfied.
And let’s not forget another good thing about nuts is the vitamins and minerals you can get from eating them.
Did you know that almonds have been shown to help with weight loss? At least 10% of the fat in them is not absorbed by the body, and almonds can help to boost your metabolism.
Put a handful of unsalted/unsweetened nuts into a small container, and throw it in your purse or bag.
2 – Fresh Fruit
As with nuts, studies show that people who tend to eat more fruit, tend to be healthier. (I’m sure you’re not too surprised.)
Yes, fresh fruit contains sugar, but whole fruits (not juice – with high fructose levels or sweetened dried fruit) contain a fair bit of water and fiber. They’re a source of many essential nutrients that are not always consumed enough through our dietary intake. And fresh fruit is low in calories, fat and sodium.
Fiber is something that not only helps to fill you up (known as the “satiety factor”), but it helps to slow release of fruit sugar into your bloodstream and to reduce the notorious “blood sugar spike.”
Try a variety of fruit (such as apples, pears and berries) and pair them with a handful of nuts.
Can’t do fresh? Try frozen. Plus, they’re already chopped for you.
3 – Chia Seeds
Chia is not only high in fiber (I mean HIGH in fiber), but it also contains protein and omega-3 fatty acids as well as antioxidants, calcium, and magnesium.
Can you see how awesome these tiny guys are?
They absorb a lot of liquid, so by soaking them for a few minutes, they make a thick pudding that is delicious and fills you up.
Place two tablespoons of chia in a bowl with ½ cup of nut milk and wait a few minutes. Add in some berries, chopped fruit or nuts and/or cinnamon and enjoy!
4 – Boiled or Poached Eggs
Eggs are packed with nutrition, and most of it is in the yolk.
They contain a lot of high-quality protein and a good amount of vitamins and minerals.
And recent research shows that the cholesterol in the yolks is not associated with high cholesterol or heart disease risk for most of the healthy population.
According to the Mayo Clinic, for people with diabetes, however, consuming seven eggs per week may significantly increase the risk of heart disease.
Be sure to consider the recommended daily limits on cholesterol in your food.
So for most healthy people, eggs have a neutral to favorable effect on the balance between good and bad cholesterol.
Eggs are a natural source of vitamin E.
Boil some eggs and keep them in your fridge for a super-quick (and nutritious) snack!
5 – Vegetables
Although I don’t need to tell you how great veggies are for you, maybe I need to sell you on the delicious “snack-ability” of these nutrition powerhouses.
What are we looking for in a snack: flavor, variety and portability. Vegetables are a perfect choice.
Veggies contain fiber and water to help fill you up, with fewer calories. Most important, vegetables contain nutrients that are vital to the health and maintenance of your body.
Common nutrients found in veggies include fiber, folate, potassium and vitamins A and C.
You can easily open a bag of baby carrots and/or cherry tomatoes and give them a quick rinse (they’re already bite-sized). Use a bit of dip. Have you sampled almond butter on celery?
Go ahead and try one, or more, of these healthy snacks. Prepare them the night before if you need to. They will not be “tasteless,” like “cardboard,” or “completely unsatisfying.” Trust me.
Do you have any healthy snack ideas you’d like to share with the Feed Yourself Fully community? Please share them below, we’d love to hear from you.