I just love snacks. They hardly take any time to make and they fill me up until my next meal.
But I have to admit, sometimes I catch myself craving snacks when I’m stressed, anxious, or sad.
Especially sweet or salty snacks. Even though I have a major sweet tooth, I’ve found that I feel worse after eating an unhealthy snack.
I may really want that yummy blueberry donut, but guilt sets in the moment I’m finished eating its’ sugary “goodness”. Not to mention, my blood sugar spikes and I crash an hour or two later.
I’ve been experimenting with several healthy snacks over the past couple of years to see which ones I like best – especially because I have a little one to feed and I want to make sure she’s eating healthy – and I found these to be my go-to’s:
- Carrots: contain fiber, potassium, zinc, vitamin E and vitamin K. The antioxidants and phytochemicals in these little orange guys help improve immune function and they can actually delay the effects of aging. I like to remove the attached greens before storing carrots into my refrigerator, or they draw nutrients out from the roots……….then it’s essentially pointless to eat them. And if you’re wondering if your mom was right when she told you carrots would help your eyesight…….she was partially! If you currently have a vitamin A deficiency, carrots will definitely help restore vision.
- Avocados: My very favorite. These keep me super energized because of how quickly the monounsaturated fat burns, and it evens out my insulin levels which means I stay energized with no mid-afternoon crash. Plus they really help me with focus and concentration which is important when raising a toddler and running a business. If you have someone in your family with high cholesterol, get them to start eating more avocados because their cholesterol will begin to lower. Plus they just taste amazing….
- Almonds: they have so much fiber, protein, and healthy fat going on, that these nuts curb my sugar cravings. Plus they contain vitamin E which is great for taking care of my skin. I also eat almonds as a preventative measure. Several people in my family have passed away due to cancer, and research is beginning to show that almonds can lower the risk!
- Celery: I actually like the taste of celery by itself, but if you grew up eating celery topped with peanut butter and raisins (aka ants on a log) I say continue the tradition. Whatever gets you to eat your veggies. 🙂 The only thing I would change is almond butter instead of peanut butter as it’s a healthier alternative. I enjoy eating celery before exercising, because it’s a super source of antioxidants. It’s also rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, potassium, and dietary fiber. My husband cannot stand the taste of celery by itself, so I stuff almond butter in the bottom of this mason jar (1/4) and cut the celery to fit inside. It makes for a great snack he can take to the office. I also do this with his carrots and hummus.
- Broccoli: Another preventative food for cancer, because of its’ phytochemicals. If there was one green snack I’d refer, it’s this one. It’s packed full of vitamin A, vitamin C, fiber, folic acid, and calcium. It’s technically better to eat raw, but sometimes I lightly steam it.
When it’s the “time of the month” I always include a piece of dark chocolate into my healthy snacks list! This not only calms the period monster down, but it also enhances immune defense, because there are too many antioxidants to count.
It seriously has 30 times the antioxidant level of green tea, you guys. How cool is that?
It’s also the best natural food source of heart-healthy and brain-balancing magnesium. I personally enjoy this bar because it gives me a nice dopamine and serotonin boost which increase my feelings of well-being. You can find whatever flavor/brand you like best, but just make sure to find the highest percentage of dark chocolate, because this means it’s the least processed.
And as tempting as it is, I only eat one square. 🙂
Healthy snacks are what I prefer now that I’ve found a few that I truly like.
Instead of eating out of habit, or without thinking, I’m intentional about my food intake. I don’t always stick to my strict schedule, and I allow myself “treat” days, but I would consider myself an emotional eater overcomer.
This may sound a little strange, but if I’ve had enough healthy snacks and I’m still craving sugar or salty food, I’ll just take a bath with hot tea for total mind/body relaxation! This helps navigate what emotion I’m feeling and gives me the self-discipline to deal with said emotion instead of temporarily denying it by eating quickly and poorly.
I hope you can find an activity you want to do instead of emotionally eating, because you’ll be able to replace unhealthy snacks with healthy snacks in no time!
Below are items that I currently own/love that really help me maintain a healthy snack lifestyle so I thought I’d share them with you! Click on any item that peak your interest and it will take you to more product information!