19 Healthy Snacks for Weight Loss You’ll Want to Eat Every DayFebruary 7 2019
There are so many good reasons to make healthy snacking a part of your weight loss plan. Wholesome nibbles can help you stay satisfied between meals, making you less likely to feel ravenous and overeat or indulge in unhealthy temptations. A healthy snack can also quell cravings and ward off feelings of deprivation, helping you ignore junk foods’ siren song. The only catch: It’s not always obvious which snacks are actually satisfying and good for you.
So what exactly counts as healthy when it comes to a snack? Generally, you want to aim for a snack with around 836 to 1,046kJ (200 to 250cal), around 10 grams of protein, and five grams of fibre, recommends nutrition expert Sarah Pflugradt. That amount of kilojoules is enough to fill you up without sending you over your daily budget. Plus, the combo of protein and fibre will help you stay fuelled until your next meal.
And if you’re looking for some inspiration, you’ve come to the right place. These fast, tasty expert-backed picks fit the bill.
Apple with peanut butter
Apples are one of the top fruits for weight loss, thanks to their high-fibre content, according to a 2015 study. Add a shot of protein and healthy fats with two tablespoons of natural peanut butter, and you’ll be set, Pflugradt says. Just be sure to read the labels on peanut butter jars carefully and check for added sugar and unhealthy oils.
Eating a 3/4-cup of legumes, like chickpeas, can help you lose nearly half a kilo in six weeks without making any other changes to your diet, suggests a March 2016 review. Instead of eating them plain (talk about booooring!) try roasting your chickpeas with extra-virgin olive oil, sea salt, and a generous sprinkle of cumin or smoked paprika for a boost of flavour.
The small-but-mighty seeds aren’t just loaded with protein and fibre. “They’re great for weight loss,” says nutrition expert Amy Shapiro. “They hold up to 10 times their weight in water, so they expand in your stomach and help keep you full.” Try them in a sweet chia pudding with unsweetened almond milk, chopped walnuts, and dried blueberries.
Carrots with hummus
Hummus is just another tasty way to get a daily helping of beans, so dig in. As for your dipper? Go for raw veggies like celery and carrots – they’re rich in carotenoids, polyphenols that research suggests could help improve your insulin sensitivity as well as lower your waist circumference and body mass index.
Dessert hummus with fruit
Just like savoury hummus, the sweeter variety is made with protein – and fibre – rich chickpeas that’ll fill you up for the long haul. Make your own in dessert hummus by pureeing chickpeas with vanilla extract, unsweetened cocoa powder, and a touch of maple syrup for some natural sweetness. You can also pick one up at the store as a dip for fresh strawberries. Just be sure to avoid those loaded with sugar – and stick to the serving size.
Smoothies are a satisfying way to sneak in an extra serving of veggies, making it a great snack for weight loss. “I like a 50/50 combo of veggies and fruit with a protein add-in and a fibre-add in,” Pflugradt says. Think a handful each of baby spinach and frozen mango with 3/4-cup low-fat milk and one tablespoon ground flaxseeds, or a handful each of kale and frozen berries with 3/4-cup unsweetened almond milk and one tablespoon almond butter.
Almonds with pomegranate seeds
Overweight and obese women who ate 45g of nuts as part of a low-kJ diet for three months lost more weight than women who didn’t eat nuts, found May 2014 study from the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences. Try pairing 1/4-cup almonds with 1/2-cup pomegranate seeds. The water and the fibre in the fruit will fill you up even more – not to mention satisfy your sweet tooth, says Pflugradt.
Good news, guac lovers: Avocado eaters weigh less and have lower body mass indexes compared to people who steer clear of the green fruit, according to this study.
Savoury Greek yoghurt
Swap your usual fruit or muesli add-in for roasted, salted pumpkin seeds, chopped olives, or sliced cherry tomatoes, Pflugradt recommends. You’ll still get around 23 grams of appetite-squashing protein per cup of yoghurt. Not to mention a shot of probiotics, which could help you shed up to four percent of your body fat in just six weeks, research suggests.
Baked sweet potato with nut or seed butter
Sweet potatoes aren’t just for lunch or dinner. The sweet flavour paired with six grams of fibre make the orange vegie a satisfying snack, too. Add a protein-rich topper for more staying power – like a tablespoon of almond butter or tahini.
Cottage cheese with raspberries
In addition to being packed with protein (around 25 grams per cup), full-fat cottage cheese is rich in linoleic acid, a fatty acid that’s tied to fat loss. Top with some fresh raspberries for a hit of low-kJ sweetness and a mega dose of fibre-you’ll get a whopping eight grams from one cup.
Porridge with cinnamon
Why limit something this good to just breakfast? Research shows that oats are rich in beta-glucans, a type of soluble fibre that boosts satiety. Pflugradt recommends cooking 1/4-cup rolled or steel-cut oats with 1/2-cup of skim milk for a filling combo of fibre and protein. Top with your favourite fruit plus a sprinkle of cinnamon-studies suggests that the spice could help promote stable blood-sugar levels.
Pears with Parmesan cheese
One medium pear packs nearly six grams of fibre. Enjoy it with 30g of Parmesan cheese, which is protein-packed and makes for a yummy sweet-salty combo, says Shapiro.
The protein in eggs has been shown to keep hunger hormones at bay and promote weight loss. But if you’re bored with snacking on hard-boiled ones, shake things up by making bite-sized frittatas in a mini muffin tin.
Help yourself to a cup of the soybean pods, Shapiro recommends. You’ll get a whopping 18 grams of protein and eight grams of fibre, which will help keep you going until your next meal.
Craving something salty? Try protein- and fibre- rich pistachios. People who snacked on 1,004kJ (240cal) worth of the green nuts lowered their BMIs by one point in just four weeks, while those who ate a similar amount of pretzels saw no change, according to a June 2010 study. Pick in-shell pistachios – they take longer to eat than their shelled counterparts.
Split pea soup
It might seem like an odd choice for a snack, but get this: The protein in split peas has been shown to help reduce hunger more than the protein from dairy foods like Greek yoghurt, a 2011 study in Nutrition Journal found. In fact, just one cup of split pea soup serves up 10 grams of protein – along with five grams of fibre.
Spread a slice of whole-grain toast with one tablespoon of almond butter and top with mashed blueberries (frozen berries that have been thawed are fine!). You’ll get a combo of protein, healthy fat, and fibre along with an extra boost: Anthocyanins, an antioxidant compound found in blueberries that evidence shows is tied to weight loss.
Green tea latte
The grassy brew is rich in catechins, antioxidant-rich compounds that research suggests can boost kJ-burning. Still, store-bought tea lattes tend to be loaded with kilojoules and sugar. Make your own better-for-you version by blending half a cup of brewed green tea with a cup of warm low-fat milk. (Blending gives the latte a rich, frothy texture.) Stir in a teaspoon of honey if you want a hint of sweetness, Shapiro says.
Sourced from Prevention.