Valentine’s Day has come and gone, but the red-and-pink glow of holiday-themed shelves is sure to stick around a little while longer. And we all know there’s only one thing more tempting than Valentine’s candy—discount Valentine’s candy.
Luckily, there are tons of snacks that are not only healthier than candy, they’re more satisfying! We’ve compiled this list to share some of our favorite healthy snacks that are great for your body and your taste buds.
For those of us with a sweet tooth, super-sugary candy can be especially tempting. But when it comes to natural sweetness, it’s hard to beat fruit!
Berries are great snacks because they are bite-sized and full of vitamins and nutrients—especially antioxidants. Cherries, for example, contain flavonoids, which are shown to be anti-inflammatory and good for cardiovascular health. Meanwhile, the fibers in blackberries known as pectin help to reduce cholesterol, and strawberries are a great source of potassium, fiber, vitamin B, and vitamin C.
If gummies are your kryptonite, try dried fruit! The texture and taste are wonderful, and they are much healthier than their candy counterparts. For a boost of fiber and to feel fuller on fewer calories, mix in nuts for a trail-mix treat.
Yogurt is known to be full of gut-healthy probiotics and calcium, making it a great snack for any time of day. Greek yogurt is especially good for the body, having nearly twice the protein and half of the sodium of regular yogurt.
One of the best things about yogurt is its versatility, as it pairs deliciously with many healthy, flavorful toppings. Honey, for example, is a natural sweetener that is great for sore throats and a boost of extra energy. Mixing in fruit will add sweetness and all the benefits listed above. Finding the combination you like best is sure to give you a snack you’ll never get sick of!
Next time you’re stocking your cabinets, make sure to include chickpeas! Full of fiber and protein, these little guys will fill you up and keep you satisfied between meals. If your favorite snacks always have a bit of a crunch, try roasting them with your favorite spices or seasonings for a great crunch.
If you prefer snacking with a dip, smooth and creamy hummus will be your new best friend. Made primarily of chickpeas, hummus is healthy and filling, and it goes great with all your favorite veggies!
Whether you like sweet snacks or savory ones, popcorn is the perfect crowd pleaser. A 1 ounce serving—about 3 cups of air-popped popcorn—is only 110 calories, plus several grams of protein and fiber.
We all love the classic combination of butter and salt, but popcorn can be so much more than just a movie theater treat! Sprinkling cheese, seasonings, and even a little spice are great ways to tailor popcorn to personal tastes without off-setting its health benefits.
Looking for something sweet? Moderation is the key to healthy eating, but it’s important to remember that caramel is pretty much pure sugar. Some great alternatives are vanilla, cinnamon, a pinch or two of brown sugar—take inspiration from your favorite desserts, and enjoy the flavor without worry!
We know this may seem counter-productive—after all, isn’t this list supposed to exclude candy? Well, here’s the good news for chocolate lovers: there are ways to indulge without disrupting your healthy eating. Dark chocolate in small servings contains antioxidants that are good for the body, and paired with healthy fruits it makes for a satisfying, sweet treat.
Just make sure to keep portioning and moderation in mind! Eating too much dark chocolate will, unfortunately, offset the good it can do, like improving blood flow and blood pressure. Our suggestion: make sure to pick dark chocolate with a high cocoa content—70% or above—to avoid excess sugar, and select the size of your snack carefully!
Nuts make for great snacks throughout the day because they are bite-sized, but packed with healthy fats, protein, and vitamins. However, they are naturally high in fat and calories, meaning that they can help hold you over between meals, but there’s the danger of “too much of a good thing.”
Boiled, salted, and pre-flavored nuts are deceptive, so always make sure to check the label before picking up your next snack! Our tip for portion control is not to keep a tub of nuts by you while you snack—it’s tougher to stop your snacking!
That being said, GO NUTS! Almonds help curb hunger by regulating blood sugar, and are rich in potassium and Vitamin E. Pistachios, meanwhile, are full of an antioxidant called lutein which gives them their color and helps to keep eyes healthy.
Eggs are a breakfast staple for a reason—they taste great, and they’re pretty great for you! Eggs are a “high-quality protein” because they contain all 9 amino acids, which are the basic building blocks of the body that do everything from strengthening the immune system to fighting arthritis. Meanwhile, they are thought to boost satiety, helping people feel fuller and eat less. As if that weren’t enough, they contain vitamin A, vitamin B12, vitamin D, and antioxidants!
Many people worry about eating egg yolks, as they contain most of the calories in an egg, but they also contain most of the nutrients! The biggest consideration when it comes to eggs is how they are prepared, so watch how you’re making them and what you’re eating them with, and you’re free to enjoy a breakfast-themed snack anytime!
When it comes to living a healthy life, eating (and snacking!) well is only one piece of the puzzle. At University Bariatrics, our patients are our passion, and we combine unparalleled care with the most effective, top-of-the-line surgical procedures to help them achieve their goals. Start a health journey today with our amazing team’s support! http://www.universitybariatrics.com