GIFS are my favorite. Have I said that yet? Well, in case you didn't know, now you know.
Today is all about snacking! We all love another opportunity to eat. Especially when that lunch wears off, hunger and fatigue start to creep in, and your co-worker brought in those amazing chocolate chip cookies.
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner can be on point. Protein, veggies, quality fats, unprocessed whole carbohydrate options... all the good stuff. But snacking... that's where we often fall off the wagon.
A common area of confusion is what people should do for snacks? With so many on-the-go, 100 calorie packs, and "healthy" advertised options, it feels like it can be a bit complicated.
The funny thing is it really can be SUPER simple!
One of our favorite mantras we like to go by here at CORE is "eat real food". What even is real food? Real food is something that once was alive or was grown naturally. Things laden with preservatives, added sugars, or processed to the point where you're not sure what the original form was, don't fall into this category. Those 100 calorie chips ahoy crisps don't make the cut.
So what can you do? How are you supposed to snack while at work or away from home? Its not like you can cook up a small snack in the break room (or can you?).
Back to the mantra: Eat REAL food. Vegetables, nuts, fruit, protein...
Options that are HIGH in nutrients (*ahem veggies*) are always a great starting point. Find a few go-to vegetables that you enjoy eating, cut them up at home (or at work) and boom, you're on your way to a fiber rich, high nutrient, low calorie snack. By including veggies outside of "normal meals" you are getting more of the micronutrients necessary for your body to function well!
Taking it a step further, consider adding in some protein. This can be already prepped meat you have on hand, hard-boiled eggs, nitrate-free sliced turkey or chicken, high quality jerky (avoid ones with lots of sugar and additives), etc. Protein temporarily raises your metabolism (thermic effect of food), helps you stay full, and is important for maintaining lean muscle mass.
Why not add in some fats! Fat helps you feel satiated after eating, provides energy, tastes good, helps with hormones, and much more. One recommendation on fats - be careful of eating a huge bag of nuts. Fats are higher in calorie than carbohydrates and protein and should be eaten in the right portion. Great options are nuts/seeds, nut butters, avocados.
Depending on your activity throughout the day, some quality carbohydrates such as fruit or whole, unprocessed grains can be added in for extra energy. Start with the recommendations above before deciding if carbohydrates are needed. Keep this to a palm-size portion (for girls) and 2 palms (for guys).
*Want more information or help with overall nutrition, including what to include with meals, timing, and portions, check out nutrition consultations by clicking here!*
Do I even need snacks?