When three o’ clock rolls around, it’s time to reach for a snack. Oftentimes we go for a bag of chips, some cookies, soda or something from the vending machine. While these are quick and easy to eat, they won’t help fill you up and get you through the day, and they contain a lot of empty calories. We’ve compiled a list of healthy snacks that are fast, delicious and energizing to get through the afternoon slump of your workday.
Nuts, like almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts or pecans, make for great snacks. Not only are they filling, they contain heart-healthy fats and fiber. Since they can be high in calories, portion them out into baggies (about 1.5 ounces) before the workday and grab them on your way out the door.
Though it’s tempting to get a soda or energy drink in the afternoon, a sugary beverage will leave you crashing later in the day, and it won’t keep you hydrated. Stick with water or skim milk. If you like juice, go with 100 percent pure fruit juice like orange or apple. Or try adding a few pieces of your favorite fruit like lemon or blueberries to your water for an added burst of flavor.
To satisfy your sweet tooth and keep it heart healthy, try making your own frozen yogurt. With non-fat yogurt, blend some frozen or fresh berries and freeze overnight for a quick morning grab. For chocolate lovers, dark chocolate (70 percent cacao or more) can help lower blood pressure—and it’s chocolate.
A no-brainer snack: fruit. Easy to eat at your desk and with a large selection to choose from, fruit is a great choice. Try pairing apple slices with peanut butter, and consider choosing organic for both. Or bring along some of your favorite veggies ― like carrot sticks and celery ― with hummus. Hummus contains fiber, protein and heart-healthy fats.
One of the most important things about snacking is being aware of how much you’re eating. This is why portioning is so important. It’s easy to eat as you work, but that can result in a lot of unnecessary calories. Prepare portioned snacks ahead of time for a grab-as-you-go healthy and filling snack perfect for the workday.