Nutrient-Rich Snacking

By: Kim Beavers Email
By: Kim Beavers Email

As a dietitian, I think I get asked about snacks more than anything else. And at times I feel like I give the same response (fruits, veggies, low-fat dairy). Well the reason for the repeated response is because those foods are nutrient rich.

Nutrient-rich foods are foods that provide substantial amounts of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients with few calories. The premise is that we all snack and as a society we are snacking more than ever. We all also need nutrients to stay healthy, therefore our snacks should be healthy or nutrient rich.

Here is a list of some good options:

  • Bean dip (Kroger) or refried beans + salsa and baked chips
  • Avocado
  • Cucumber, carrots + yogurt
  • Baby Bell or Laughing cow lower fat cheese + whole wheat Crackers
  • Olives and figs
  • Nuts and popcorn (low fat)
  • Low-fat cottage cheese + strawberries + honey
  • Whole fruit frozen bars
  • Dried fruit + nuts
  • Kettle cooked popcorn
  • Canned fruit

If you need specific choices to stash at work, try these options:

  • Nuts (lightly salted or unsalted are preferable)
  • Tuna (pouch is nice as it needs no draining and no opener) Star-kist has lower-sodium choices
  • Instant oatmeal (many brands are lower in sodium than before)
  • Kroger’s Private Selection Organic brand has 0 mg sodium
  • Soup
  • Whole grain Crackers
  • Dried fruit
  • Canned fruit
  • Peanut butter
  • Almond butter
  • Popcorn

    Now about that office candy jar ... if you must go there, try to take ONE piece of hard candy only (it takes longer to eat and will only cost you 20 to 30 calories). Otherwise, stick to the nutrient-dense choices.

    Until next time: Eat well, live well.


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