Can you afford to have snacks, if you want to lose weight? ABSOLUTELY!
In fact, healthy snacks can even assist with your weight loss goals. A well timed, appropriate snack can banish the 3pm sugar cravings, support healthy main meal choices and portion sizes, and give you extra energy to exercise.
The perfect snack choices for weight loss, in our opinion, should meet the following criteria:
- Low energy density: Approximately 600-700kJ (or 150-170 calories) per serve
- Nutrient rich: Either a wholefood, or a product consisting mostly of wholefood ingredients. Avoid products with a long list of artificial additives.
- Filling: Snacks that are rich in protein, fibre, low GI carbohydrate and/or healthy fats will keep you fuller for longer.
- Achievable: Healthy snacks need to be easy to purchase and/or prepare, and readily available to you.
To help get you started, we have listed 15 healthy and portable snacks that tick all the boxes!
- Sliced apple with 2tsp organic crunchy peanut butter (145 cal/serve). The addition of peanut butter makes the humble apple way more appealing! Keep a jar of organic peanut butter in your desk drawer, and grab an apple from your office fruit box!
- Large banana (130cal/serve)
Nature’s ultimate portable snack. Take to work each day or if you’re lucky, grab from the office fruit box.
- Chopped carrot with Obela ‘hummus to go’ single tubs (170 cal/serve).
We’re sure you’ve heard of this option before! Keep a bag of carrots and a 4-pack of Obela single serve tubs in the work fridge, or bring single portions with you each day.
- Four Vita Weats with Philadelphia light mini-tubs (160 cal/serve).
The perfect alternative to Assorted Creams! Keep a box of Vita Weats in your desk drawer, or if you are worried about portion size, prepare a zip-lock bag with 4 crackers to take each day.
- Two Ryvita with ¼ avocado (150cal/serve)
Who doesn’t love avocado? Keep a box of Ryvita in your desk drawer, and bring a whole avocado to keep in your work fridge. Keep the avocado in a Tupperware with a squeeze of lemon to help it last the week.
- Chobani 0.5% plain yoghurt with 20g trail mix (150 cal/serve)
Probiotics and prebiotics anyone? Take a single serve tub of Chobani with a small container of trail mix each day. Make sure you choose a good quality trail mix with unsweetened dried fruits, seeds and nuts – no chocolate bits!
- Four pieces of dried fruit with 20g mixed nuts (160 cal/serve)
This one travels well in your handbag, and it perfect for the desk drawer! Each morning prepare a zip-lock bag with 4 pieces of dried apricot or apple, and 20g of mixed nuts.
- Two boiled eggs (130 cal/serve)
Super filling, and great if you’re watching your carb intake. Whilst getting ready for work in the morning, boil 2 eggs then transfer to a Tuppaware container and keep in your work fridge.
- The Happy Snack Company roasted chickpeas (96 cal/serve)
Featuring on The Healthy Food Guide ‘best snack’ list three years in a row, for good reason. The single serve packs make a great handbag and desk-draw choice.
- Mainland cheese and crackers (110 cal/serve)
Everyone loves cheese and crackers. Throw one of these portion-controlled snack packs in your bag and transfer to your work fridge when you arrive. You can also find these at 7-11 and service stations.
- Carmen’s Fruit Free Muesli Bars (190cal/serve)
Although these bars creep over our energy target, they are lower in added sugar and more ‘wholefood-based’ than most other supermarket alternatives. They are dense, so you could easily have half a bar for morning tea, and half a bar for afternoon tea.
- Kez’s kitchen Free and Naked wholefood bars (95cal/serve)
If you work in a school, these bars a nut free as well as portable and delicious. They come in 5 different flavours, all of which contain only wholefood ingredients.
- A latte coffee (110 cal)
A healthy snack that offers a boost of low GI carbohydrate, protein caffeine to get you through the afternoon. And, an excuse to get out of the office and go for a walk. Perfection!
- Protein shake (110 cal/serve)
Choose a high quality protein powder that contains only natural ingredients, and if flavoured, uses stevia rather than an artificial sweetener. Keep in your desk drawer along with a shaker – just add water and you’re set! Some brands we love include ‘180 Nutrition Superfood blend’, ‘Amazonia Raw Protein Isolate’, and ‘Happy Way protein powders’.
- Homemade protein balls (~60cal per mini ball)
If you can spare 20 minutes on your weekend, homemade protein balls are easy to prepare, and they make perfect portable snacks. Find a recipe that uses wholefood ingredients and choose a high-quality protein powder (see above). We advise you limit calorie dense, nutrient-poor ingredients such as syrups and coconut oil.