The Healthiest, Most Satisfying 100-Calorie Desk Snacks from The Healthiest, Most Satisfying 100-Calorie Desk Snacks
The Healthiest, Most Satisfying 100-Calorie Desk Snacks
The Healthiest, Most Satisfying 100-Calorie Desk Snacks
It would be great if there were one magic formula everyone could follow and know what, when, and how much to eat to look and feel their best, so no one has to guess and face possible side effects such as weight gain. But there isn’t. Making a snack healthy means making it balanced, Lisa Moskovitz, RD, CDN at New York Nutrition Group, says. You should ideally include protein, carbs and healthy fats. A 100-calorie snack should contain at least of these macronutrients, she adds.
Berries and string cheese
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Fruits are a healthy snack but you should always include a source of protein for satiety purposes. An example is half a cup of berries and low-fat string cheese, Lisa Moskovitz, RD, CDN at New York Nutrition Group, says. For a sweet snack, the cheese goes well with high-fiber and antioxidant-rich berries. Pair one stick of string cheese with half a cup berries, like blackberries, blueberries, strawberries and/or raspberries.
Sprouts, cucumbers and goat cheese
Nikita Kapur, MS, RDN, CDN, CLT at Compass Nutrition, says she is a huge fan of this snack. “Goat cheese is a good option for people who are lactose intolerant,” she adds. The fat molecules in goat’s milk are smaller, making them more easily digestible. An ounce of goat cheese has 80 calories. Cucumbers, which are made up of 95 percent water and are extremely low in calories, offer many nutritional benefits. Research shows that that extracts from cucumbers may provide antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. Sprouts have only about 10 calories, half a gram of fiber, and half a gram of protein per sprout.
A scoop of SunButter and an apple
Fruit can be a great snack, Samantha Eaton, certified health coach at Healthy Eaton, says. “I try to balance the nutrients [in] my snacks to help keep my blood sugar and hormones balanced.” For example, she’d add some almonds or a scoop of SunButter to an apple or banana to add some protein and healthy fats.
Boiled egg with fruit
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Fruit is an OK snack on its own but for a good blood sugar response and satiety you need protein, and a hardboiled eggs is a great option, Kapur says. You need good sources of fiber as well for weight loss, she adds, and many fruits and vegetables contain about 5 grams or more of dietary fiber per serving. This is a fifth of the recommended daily value. They include apples, berries, and pears.
Roasted chickpeas and veggies
Chickpeas are high in fiber and vegetable protein, Kapur says. They are delicious paired with fresh, crunchy veggies, especially in the forms of dips such as hummus. They go very well with a variety of different flavors and cooking methods from mashing to sautéing and roasting. They are especially good for diabetics also because they are not too calorie-dense, she adds.
Steamed of roasted, edamame contains a lot of protein and about 8 grams of fiber per cup, Kapur says. Shelled edamame can be roasted and sprinkled with sea salt and cracked pepper for an unusual but delicious snack. A little serving of edamame also gives you a healthy dose of iron, vitamin A and vitamin C.
Certain protein bars
Protein bars should be used as “emergency snacks,” Kapur says. You can make them yourself or buy them from a store. Just look for wholesome ingredients, she adds. “Look at the label and if you can grab each ingredient individually, then the protein bar is OK.” Stay away from “glorified candies” that are full of sugar and sweeteners. “If there’s sugar but not a lot of protein, that’s going to spike your blood sugar more, causing you to crash later,” Eaton says.
Organic popcorn with seeds mixed in
“With 3 cups per serving, popcorn can be a low-calorie and fiber rich snack,” Marisa Moore, registered dietitian nutritionist, says. And you can do a lot with it. “Skip the movie theater butter style popcorn for your own stovetop or air popped variety.” Punch up the flavor and crunch with bold spices as in my Smoked Paprika Almond Popcorn Bowl, she adds. Eaton recommends mixing seeds with it.
Popcorn with olive oil
The olive oil is your source of healthy fat, Moskovitz says. A new study shows that it can be helpful for weight loss. An easy recipe: Health 2 to 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the popcorn kernels, cover the pot, and cook until popped, according to the Food Network. Turn off the heat and drizzle the popcorn with the remaining olive oil while stirring.
Unflavored Greek yogurt and nuts
Moskovitz doesn’t recommend flavored yogurt because it is filled with added sugar and artificial sweeteners. Just a small 8-ounce serving of the sweet dessert can have as many as 47 grams of sugar. That is more than what the American Heart Association says is acceptable for both men (38 grams) and women (25 grams) a day. If you want to eat yogurt and fruits, you are better off purchasing them separately and mixing them in a bowl, she adds. The nuts are your source of healthy fats.
Celery and peanut butter
A small stalk of celery with a tablespoon of smooth peanut butter contains about 100 calories and provides you with 4-5 grams of protein and 1-2 grams of fiber. The combination of celery and peanut butter is one of Moskovitz’s favorite. It takes more energy to break down celery, so when you eat it, you burn calories. Research has shown celery is a great source of flavonols and flavone antioxidants, which have anti-inflammatory properties.
Almonds and banana
A new study shows how if you add a total of between 0.5 ounces (for kids) and 1.5 ounces (for adults) of almonds in anything you eat throughout the day you are doing a tremendous favor to your overall diet quality and gut microbiota. Almonds have a unique nutrient package: 23 almonds have 160 calories with 6 grams of plant based protein, 4 grams of filling dietary fiber, 13 grams of “good” unsaturated fats and important vitamins and minerals. One banana has 105 calories. It helps to keep sugar levels even.
Dark chocolate covered almonds
Who would have thought that a healthy kind of food which is also delicious actually exists? The magic ingredient in chocolate is cocoa, which is packed with antioxidants and healthy chemicals that improve your overall health. Certain ingredients in chocolate can help boost a person’s metabolism, making the body work harder to burn off fat, according to research.
Yogurt, cocoa powder and frozen berries
Adding cocoa powder to yogurt and frozen berries is a quick and delicious way to make a healthy snack sweet and tasty, if you’re craving something sugary, Moskovitz says. Natural cocoa powder provides you with a dose of antioxidants, which have been shown to improve stress levels and have also been shown to lower your risk of heart disease. Also, the flavonoids in cocoa function as antioxidants that help prevent systemic inflammation.
Pickles with nuts
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This is a good snack if you are craving something salty, Moskovitz says. Pickles are a good source of Vitamin A, iron, potassium, manganese, and dietary fiber. They are low in saturated fat, and very low in cholesterol. Many people can’t eat them by themselves because they are salty, so add nuts for balance and a good source of healthy fats and protein, she adds.
Hummus and carrot sticks
Take a few minutes on the weekend to set yourself up for success for the week, Eaton says. “Think through your snacks and plan ahead.” Maybe you want to make a dip and cut some veggies for dipping like hummus and carrot sticks, she adds. “There are lots of healthy options that are quick/simple to throw together that’ll help you reach your goals much faster than reaching for processed foods on a regular basis.”
Raw chocolate protein bites
“I love chocolate. I eat it every day,” Eaton says. “If I deprive myself of sweets or chocolate, I know I’m just going to overeat/binge on it later, so I give in to my cravings so they don’t derail me later.” Instead of eating store-bought chocolate that’s loaded with processed sugars and emulsifiers, she adds cacao powder to her smoothies or uses it to make raw chocolate protein bites.
A handful of nuts with sea salt
This is a great salty/crunchy snack, Eaton says. A trail mix instead of nuts will do as well. The nutritional wealth of sea salt includes vital minerals like sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, bromide, chloride, iron, copper, and zinc among other beneficial elements. Sea salts also help in maintaining balanced levels of blood sugar, according to Organic Facts.
Kale chips with guacamole
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When you really want chips, Eaton says, looking for organic brown rice chips, organic corn chips, plantain chips, or kale chips are healthier swaps. “Dip them in guacamole for healthy fats to make it even better for you.”
Date nut butter poppers
Chia seed pudding
Chia seeds are a top superfood because they are easy to throw into a smoothie or yogurt, and they are packed with great nutritional value, Millie Wilson, Registered Dietitian for My Fit Foods, says. They provide heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids, a significant amount of fiber (10 grams in two tablespoons), so they are among the most effective and healthy appetite suppressants, and even have some protein to keep you fuller for longer, she adds.
Two hardboiled eggs contain about 130 calories and 12 grams of complete protein, which means they have all nine essential amino acids that your body can’t make itself. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says that this collection of amino acids is what suppresses the appetite. A study has found that people who ate eggs for breakfast were feeling less hungry throughout the day, eating about 330 fewer calories overall.
This quick snack of lean meat stripped of fat provides you with a lot of protein so you can feel full for longer. One piece of about 20 grams contains 82 calories. So don’t overeat it, but you won’t have to. A 1-ounce piece of beef jerky provides 9.4 grams of protein. The Institute of Medicine recommends 46 daily grams of protein for adult women and 56 daily grams of protein for men.
Roasted or raw nuts with chocolate chips
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This is a nice and healthy snack to satisfy you sweet and crunchy cravings, Kapur says. Nuts are energy dense foods rich in bioactive macronutrients. Their unique composition is critical for their health effects. Studies show consistent evidence of the beneficial effects of nut consumption – lower risk of congenital heart disease, diabetes in women, and emerging cardiovascular risk factors.
Frozen grapes and cottage cheese
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Cottage cheese is somewhat underrated when it comes to protein sources. Make is a sweet snack by adding frozen grapes, if you don’t like berries. 100 grams of cottage cheese contain about 90 calories. Half a cup of frozen grapes has about 50.