Diet and Nutrition – Afternoon Snacker
Hello Healthy Friends!
Are you an afternoon snacker? If so, I have some suggestions for snacks that will put that 3PM energy slump to shame!
QUINOA WITH MIXED VEGETABLES—You know about the benefits of this super-grain, but chances are, you have not considered trying it as an afternoon snack. Meal prep this one on the weekend by mixing two-thirds cup of quinoa, cooked veggies, and a touch of lemon juice for its antioxidants, protein, and healthy fat balance. Since it’s being consumed as a snack, we should have parameters, so as not to overeat.
CRACKERS, CHEESE AND CHOCOLATE—Easy to store at your desk or make ahead, this well-balanced combination of fiber and healthy fats, plus an individually wrapped dark chocolate square will keep you full until dinner. Smear one wedge of Laughing Cow Lite, or any spreadable goat cheese on two Wasa crackers, and top with cherry tomatoes or cucumbers.
KAMUT PUFFS, EGG AND BERRIES—A puffed grain available in any cereal aisle. Since it’s super-low calorie, you can eat an entire cup, and get great satisfaction from the crunch. Add a cup of berries and a protein packed hardboiled egg.
TOASTER-OVEN TORTILLA PIZZA—If you thought pizza wasn’t part of a wholesome diet, think again! Whole grains are an essential part of a healthy diet, and snack-time is the ideal moment to eat them in moderation. Spread one-quarter cup of marinara sauce over a 10-inch whole-wheat tortilla, sprinkle one ounce of reduced fat cheese and any vegetables you like on top, heat up, and enjoy.
PROTEIN POPS—Even if you are not wild about the thick texture of high-protein Greek yogurt, you will like these frozen treats. In a bowl, mix one cup of nonfat Greek yogurt, one cup of thawed frozen (include their juice) or fresh berries and a few drops of stevia. Scoop the mixture into any popsicle mold and freeze for a satisfying, low-sugar snack.
TOASTED RAISIN BREAD WITH GOAT CHEESE AND BERRIES—Use toasted, sprouted raisin bread in place of bagel, and cover in two tablespoons of soft goat cheese. A half cup of berries rounds out the slightly sweet snack.
TUNA PITA POCKET—Spread two ounces of tuna salad, made with olive oil or reduced fat vegenaise, and as many veggies as you like on half of a whole wheat pita.
If none of these snacks are your favorite, try a cup of strawberries, blackberries, or raspberries with a cheese stick. Just be sure whatever combination of snacks that you choose, keep it low in sugar, high in protein and fiber. That’s the way to beat the afternoon slump!
Sherry Jenko, NDTR, Wellness Coach
**Adapted from Redbook**