Nowadays, most of us lead a very hectic lifestyle and as a result, we often end up eating so many snacks during the day that they become more like additional meals. However, snacking, in general, isn’t always bad for us. It can even help to lose weight when we consume snacks containing 150 calories or less.Varoius studies have shown that to boost metabolism and burn calories, healthy snacking is very important.
They suggest three healthy meals and two snack a day as an ideal way to maintain a healthy weight. Moreover, healthy snacking will restrict you from overeating during regular meals. Snacking is also impotant for keeping blood sugar steady. But it is better to opt for healthy and low calorie snacks only.
It is natural to feel hungry at certain times, and depriving your body of its daily requirement of nutrients is not a good idea. Smart snacking helps in controlling appetite and evades the tendency to overeat during meals. Aside from the three major meals per day, having 3 or 4 healthy snacks at different times of the day can help burn unwanted calorie and diminish the risk of various heart diseases. According to experts, it is recommended to consume low-glycemic and anti-inflammatory snacks to lead a healthier life.
Be honest with yourself and limit your snacking up to 150 calories. Eat when you are truly hungry. If you are craving for a chocolate instead of healthy snacks, then you are fooling yourself. You will end up consuming a lot more calories. Today there are lots of low fat readymade snacks available in the market like biscuits, chips and cookies. As they are labeled low fat, people tend to eat them in greater quantities, assuming that they are taking fewer calories. However, the truth is that these snacks, claiming to be low calorie, actually contain just 11 percent less calories than full fat snacks. So, restrict yourself to a lesser amount of these snacks.
It is better to plate your snacks instead of eating directly from a packet or bag. You would surely eat more when you grab a packet of chips, cookies or pretzels. To avoid eating more calories, take out a small potion in a plate and store rest of the portion before you start. If you are unable to restrict yourself, then purchase single serving bags only.
There are unlimited healthy and low calories snacks that you can choose to maintain blood sugar level and maintain a healthy weight. Nuts are one such item. Almonds, peanuts, walnuts, and cashews are packed with protein and monounsaturated fats that help in lowering the cholesterol level and are good for our heart health. But some of them are high in calories. So stick to a handful of nuts only.
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Fruits are the best low calorie and healthy snacks. Some of them contain even less than 100 calories and each fruit has its special health benefit. For instance, one cup of cherries contain only 65 calories and high amounts of antioxidants, vitamin C, A, and melatonin. Eating cherries gives protection against heart disease, diabetes, certain cancers, and ageing skin. Eating banana is also a healthy snack choice. It contains only 81 calories and contains vital minerals like potassium. By eating an orange, which is good source of vitamin C, you will consume only 77 calories. Choosing an apple as snack can keep you fuller for a longer period because an apple with skin contains 3 gram fiber and you consume only 80 calorie. The soluble fiber and antioxidant contained in apple helps in lowering cholesterol, preventing heart disease and diabetes. Grapefruit lowers insulin level and is a good option for diabetics as it contains only 72 calorie.
Besides these, add fruits like blueberries, plums, kiwi, and raspberries as they are full of mineral and vitamin, but are low in calorie content.
Making these snacks nutritious and healthy as well as delicious can make it possible to stick to these low calorie snacks. Here are some healthy and low calorie snacks made with fruit. Make a bowl of fresh fruit salad; pour some fresh or canned orange juice over it. Add fruit like grapes, blueberries, raspberries, apple, pear etc., whatever you like most, and freeze it. Use a small amount of this tasty treat, when you get the urge to snack.
You can also make mix fruit smoothies with left over fruit salad or fresh fruit by adding bananas or any other fruits with skimmed milk. You can also prepare a delicious smoothie by blending chopped banana, non-fat plain yogurt and artificial sweetener.
Plain skimmed yogurt can be used to prepare healthy snacks by mixing it with fruits and vegetables. Use it as a salad dressing, dip or for making smoothies. Mix some juicy blueberries with yogurt. This will balance your blood glucose and provide you instant energy.
Vegetables are ideal snacking items when you are on low calorie diet. They are high in fiber and low in calorie and contain essential vitamins and minerals. They can provide a feeling of fullness without adding too many calories. There are numerous ways of preparing healthy treats without getting bored. You can eat them raw, prepare tasty salads by sprinkling lemon juice or vinegar on fresh vegetables like cucumber, celery, carrot, tomato etc., or prepare soup by steaming them.
A cup of oatmeal adds just 146 calories to the diet. Its fiber content mops up the cholesterol in the stomach, and does not allow it to reach the blood stream. This is an ideal snack for diabetics as it helps to maintain blood sugar level. It keeps you fuller for longer periods. You can eat oatmeal porridge in between any meal. It contains Vitamin B1, E1 and B2.
A celery stick contains only 20 calories, but is loaded with Vitamins like A, B1, B2, B3, B5 and B6 and also vitamin C, E and K. Its health benefits are immeasurable. It also contains potassium that helps to lower blood pressure. It also contains high level of calcium that aids in nervous system functioning and its fiber content is also high.
Whole grain bread
A piece of whole grain toasted bread contains 85 calorie and serves as a good low calorie snack. It keeps you fuller for a longer period and contains fiber, iron vitamin B, magnesium and folate. It is beneficial for digestive health.
The above mentioned healthy low calorie snack ideas will fill you up and satisfy your craving for snacks without adding too many calories.
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