Saturday, February 26, 2011

Snack smart

Remember those days when you could eat whatever you want and not worry? I was a 'late bloomer' but it definitely had its benefits...growing taller all through high school meant that I could eat a giant bowl of ice cream every night and never work out and reap no repercussions...but alas, those days are long over. When I was pregnant, I gained LITERALLY 45 pounds (I ate whatever and how much of anything I wanted, which is really unhealthy, I am going to try to be healthier next time) and after having my baby I found myself with A LOT of extra weight to get rid of. In a way, it was a blessing in disguise. It forced me to take responsibility for my body and health in a way that I hadn't as a young adult. I started exercising, which I had never done before. I learned to make smarter choices when it came to what I was putting into my body. I have a HUGE sweet tooth, and I am hungry every two hours. Seriously, my stomach starts growling two hours after my last meal, no matter what it was. So for me, snacks during the day are a MUST. Today, I am going to share with you some of my favorite healthy snacks:

1. Emerald brand cocoa roast almonds...if you're a chocoholic like me, it can really be a challenge finding a chocolately snack that you aren't going to feel guilty about. Almonds are packed with protein, which can give you the energy you need to avoid a late-afternoon crash. And since they are dusted with cocoa instead of covered in actual chocolate, they are good for you!

2. Special K cracker chips...I see 'healthy' chips all the time that aren't really that much better for you than your run-of-the-mill fried potato chips. It's so disappointing!! These are so far the ONLY chips I have found that are low fat and low-calorie. And the serving size is a whopping 30 chips...instead of the usual 12. (And they're salty and delicious!)

3. Dole fruit crisp apple cinnamon...If you're craving something sweet AND crunchy, these are delicious warmed up in the's almost like a mini apple crisp.

4. Athenos greek yogurt...comes with fruit that you can mix in...and no fat. I love yogurt, but regular low fat yogurt usually includes artificial sweetener that hurts my stomach. This stuff is GREAT for you...but doesn't have all that weird artificial stuff.

5. 100 calorie popcorn mini-bags...These come in regular butter-flavored and kettle corn. They're both good...crunchy and filling.

6. Minute Maid kids' orange juice...If you need something sweet, this stuff is great. Since it's specially made for kids, it is really smooth and mild and has added calcium and vitamins. 100% juice.

Happy snacking!!!!

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