Want to know one of the easiest—and most essential—tricks to sticking to a healthy diet? Never let yourself get too hungry. If you do, you’re more likely to reach for high-calorie, quick fix foods to sate your appetite.
The simplest way to stave off hunger is to be prepared: Stock your kitchen—and your office or gym bag—with snacks that contain good fats, protein, and fiber. Get inspired by these examples that are as effortless to put together as they are delicious.
A serving of walnuts – The ultimate grab-and-go snack, just one ounce of walnuts (about 14 halves) provides filling protein, fiber, and omega-3 essential fatty acids. Talk about a smart snack!
Banana, walnut and date muffins - Walnuts star in these fiber- and protein-containing whole-grain muffins. Sweetened only with bananas and dates (another fiber star), these quick snacks also supply good fats from the walnuts as well as the buttery spread.
Low-fat cottage cheese and fresh fruit – A single serving of protein-packed low-fat cottage cheese topped with chopped fresh fruits that are a good source of fiber, such as apple, pear, or berries, sates hunger and fulfills those creamy cravings fast.
Boiled egg and whole-grain cracker – A source of protein, boiled eggs are a great snack. Add filling fiber by slicing a boiled egg atop a whole-grain cracker.
Chili Parmesan popcorn and peanuts – Popcorn provides the fiber and peanuts the protein in this fun and filling snack. Top it off with a buttery spread, like I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter!, a source of good fats like omega-3s.
Hummus and fresh veggies – A good source of fiber and protein, just two tablespoons of hummus (that’s a single serving) makes a lasting snack when paired with fiber-containing fresh veggies.
Sugar and spice nuts – Part sweet, part spicy, and totally satisfying, this make-at-home nut mix is a perfect way to sate sweet cravings and beat the afternoon slump, thanks to the filling protein and good fats that come from both the nuts and the buttery spread.
Granola with nuts – Granola is simple to make at home and usually healthier, since you can control the amount of sugar (if any) and type of oils you use to make it. Whip up a batch for anytime snacking by mixing cinnamon-dusted oats and omega-3-containing walnuts and almonds with a small amount of oil that contains good fats (such as walnut or almond oil) or a melted buttery spread, then baking in a 350-degree oven until crisp.
Almond butter and apple slices – Almonds are another source of good fats, not to mention packed with protein and fiber. Dip sliced fresh apples into 1 tablespoon almond butter for a snack that will help fill you up.
Quick guacamole with veggie sticks – Make a quick version of guacamole by mashing the fruit of one avocado with 2 to 3 tablespoons of your favorite salsa, to taste. Portion out one serving (about ¼ cup) to eat with fresh veggies such as carrots, jicama or bell peppers, cut into sticks. The fiber in the avocado and the veggies will fill you up. Plus, avocados provide beneficial monounsaturated fatty acids, which are a source of energy.
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