Weekend Wisdom: Snacking with Purpose

Snacking is often done impulsively.  When we get hungry, we open the fridge, go to the pantry, or find the nearest vending machine to satisfy our craving.  

But, what if we planned ahead?  Most of us get hungry at predictable times (for me, it’s mid-afternoon).  We could greatly improve our overall diet if we snacked with purpose.  Here’s how:

Using MyPlate as your guide, identify the food group that you need more of in your diet.  Is it dairy?  Fruits or veggies?  Or whole grain?  Then make sure your snack includes that food group.  For best snacking, I suggest combining at least two food groups.  Here are a few ideas:

Peanut butter and apple slices

Cheese with whole grain crackers

Trail mix (whole grain breakfast cereal, popcorn, dried fruit, almonds or sunflower seeds)

Fruit smoothie

Yogurt with granola

Hummus with sugar snap peas, carrots or sliced bell peppers

Most of these suggestions are portable.  With a little planning, you will be snacking with purpose and treating your next snack as importantly as your meals.  This is the same advice I shared with several hundred high schoolers at a health fair today for Live Life Well Week.  (They listened attentively while enjoying a yogurt & granola snack). 

Snacking with purpose can enhance our overall nutrition and ultimately, our health!

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