Obesity isn’t a small problem, it’s actually a life-threatening condition that directly causes a multitude of other illnesses, including diabetes, heart disease, stroke, arthritis, and some cancers (1).
Fat cells also store toxins, so the more fat you have on your body, the more strain your body is under.
Losing weight can be difficult, especially when it comes to eating habits. Things like snacking and portion control can be the biggest challenge between you and your ideal weight.
To help you on your journey, here are 27 healthy snacks to keep on hand if you tend to get hungry.
1. Mixed Nuts
Many people avoid nuts because of how much fat they contain, but this is precisely why you should eat more of them.
Their high fiber, protein, and fat content help you feel full and satisfied after eating just a few. In contrast, junk food contains lots of sugar, which actually makes you hungrier and more likely to snack throughout the day. In fact, eating nuts can actually help you lose weight (2).
Plus, nuts are easy to carry and store and can help prevent certain cancers, depression, and other diseases. Just make sure to stick to a small portion at a time (3,4).
2. Red Bell Pepper with Guacamole
Red bell peppers contain powerful antioxidants like beta carotene, capsanthin, and quercetin. They’re also high in vitamin C (5).
Red peppers won’t fill you up on their own, but combining them with heart-healthy guacamole makes for the perfect combination of crunchy and smooth.
To keep your snack low in calories, stick to one whole pepper and 3 oz of guacamole.
3. Greek Yogurt and Mixed Berries
Yogurt is full of calcium, potassium, protein and probiotics and makes a great snack on its own. Combine it with fresh antioxidant-rich berries for a sweet, low-calorie treat (6,7).
You can also double or even triple your portion and add a few nuts for a well-balanced breakfast.
4. Apple Slices with Peanut Butter
Apples and peanut butter are a classic childhood treat.
Apples improve gut and heart health through their high fiber and polyphenol content while organic peanut butter provides protein and lower cholesterol (8,9,10).
Since peanut butter is very high in calories, stick to one tablespoon for 1 medium apple.
5. Cinnamon Flaxseed Pudding
Even though it is a fatty dairy product, cottage cheese has long been considered a high-protein diet food and is commonly used in the bodybuilding community. The secret to its success actually lies in its fat, particularly in its conjugated linoleic acid, which may help reduce body fat (11).
Flax seed boosts this snack’s weight loss abilities and fights cancer while cinnamon helps control your blood sugar to prevent cravings (12,13).
- 1/2 cup cottage cheese.
- 1 tablespoon flaxseeds.
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.
- Honey (for taste)
- Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl.
- Enjoy immediately.
7. Celery & Dip
Celery sticks are popular with dieters because they contain fewer calories than it takes for your body to digest them. Their high fiber helps keep you full.
Plus, they contain an anti-inflammatory antioxidant that prevents cancer (14). Celery also contains luteolin, an antioxidant that reduces inflammation and may also help prevent cancer (15).
Dip your celery sticks in a tablespoon of cream cheese with roasted garlic for the perfect mid-afternoon snack.
8. Kale Chips
Kale is the superfood of the decade. With its high fiber content and bounty of antioxidants, it’s no wonder that the veggie has taken over the health world by storm (16).
One cup of kale contains your daily recommended intake of vitamin A, C, and K and contributes towards a healthy colon and stable blood pressure (17).
The natural compounds within kale help decrease blood pressure and may reduce the risk of colon cancer (18,19). To get all these benefits, and more, try the recipe below.
- 1 cup bite-sized chopped kale leaves
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan salt
- Preheat your oven to 350° F
- Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.
- Spread the leaves evenly on a parchment-lined baking tray and bake for 10-15 minutes.
9. Dark Chocolate and Almonds
This tasty treat is perfect for your sweet tooth.
Almonds contain heart-healthy fats that increase satiety, boost weight loss, and improve blood sugar balance (20,21).
Dark chocolate, on the other hand, helps lower blood pressure and improve cardiovascular health. Plus, it contains high levels of magnesium (22).