As anyone who has tried to uphold a healthy diet knows, one of the hardest aspects of it involves resisting the temptation to indulge in snacking. We tell ourselves that a chip here and a cookie there isn't a big deal, but bite after bite, calorie after calorie, it all adds up.
For some the only solution is to rid their pantries of anything vaguely snackable. But for most people this isn't practical – it's only natural to want to have something quick and easy to munch on now and again.
The answer is to stock your kitchen with healthy alternatives that fulfill your need to snack, but that are also good for you. Here are a few options that not only fit into a healthy diet, but also taste great.
- Beef or Turkey Jerky
It might surprise you, but if you find a jerky company that doesn't pack their product with sodium and sugar, beef or turkey jerky makes for a great source of protein, about 9 gram per ounce. If you're really ambitious, consider buying a food smoker and making your own.
- Mixed Nuts and Trail Mix
For a quick handful of energy-packed protein, mixed nuts make for a great snack. Throw in some dried fruit, and you have a delicious, on-the-go option. To get the most out of your mix, be sure to include protein-filled almonds or pistachios.
- Hard boiled eggs
For decades we were all warned of the cholesterol risked posed by eggs, but as it turned out, we had it all wrong. Eggs are actually a great source of protein and an array of other nutrients. Boil up a carton at the beginning of the week and keeping them stored in the fridge. Eat them alone, or dice them up and throw them on top of a salad or piece of bread.
- Protein Shake
The great thing about a protein shake is that you can put virtually anything in it, even a bit of chocolate. To get the most out of your shake, throw in a scoop of whey protein, but you don't necessarily need it. Just blend up one cup of yogurt (or Greek yogurt for more protein), a healthy splash of low-fat milk or almond milk, and the fruit or veggies of your choice. Bananas, blueberries, strawberries, spinach, and even peanut butter all make great ingredients.
- Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Here's something sweet for you. But be sure to avoid store-bought brands which are filled with sugar and other nasty ingredients. Bake up a batch of your own, or there are even recipes that can be made in the microwave!