Friday, April 22, 2016

Healthy Holiday Snacking

I'm certain we all have different thoughts on what we do and don't like for snacking habits, but one thing we can probably all agree on is that it gets just a little more difficult when we have unpredictable schedules, like during the holiday season.  Probably just the word "holiday" is enough to increase your anxiety level, much less toss in there the idea of eating those holiday favorites and not impacting any work you did all year to achieve or maintain a healthy weight.  Not to mention any hopes you have for starting the new year off without any weight gain during the season.  One way to stay on track is by including healthy snacks.  I know, sounds like it could be counterproductive, but not if done with some forethought and planning.

First off, snacking can always be part of a healthy diet, but only if those snacks are carefully selected, and packed with nutrients.  Sounds easy enough, but I know many are still hesitant to give snacking a chance.  Any of the basic principles you can think of that make a healthy meal are also the basics that help with creating healthy snacks.  So my big tip here is to focus on more than 1 food group.  I always recommend aiming for at least 2 food groups, which can help increase the different vitamins and minerals you can get from those snacks.

Second, don't over do it.  Snacks should complement your meals without exceeding your calorie needs.  If you aren't snacking now but plan to add in snacks, remember that you need to cut back on your meals.  Snacking is a pick me up between meals but doesn't work if those meals are really large and high in calories.


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