Life on the go has become the universal battle cry of multitasking women everywhere. When we’re busy taking care of ourselves and others, breaking glass ceilings, and chasing our dreams, that doesn’t leave much time in the day for perfectly structured eating—and hey, that’s perfectly okay! My days are usually spent bustling to and from meetings, managing my girls’ schedules, fitting in time to take care of moi, and a few unknown surprises—meaning that snacking is often an essential means of keeping my days moving and my mind and body properly fueled. More and more, we’re accepting that snacking is not inherently unhealthy and that it’s really all about being intentional with what we eat. My primary philosophy for healthy snacking is to choose nutritious, wholesome options that don’t come in a package. When that’s not a realistic possibility, because…life…I look for labels with simple ingredients that my 8-year-old can read, which usually steers me clear of artificial ingredients and wonky chemical additives. For days when snacking is as essential to keeping you fueled as a good cup of coffee, I’ve put together my top tips to help you keep it healthy and simple. Read (and snack) on, girl!
Jo’s Snacking Takeaways
- This is my top tip, so I’ll say it again: Stick to 100 percent natural ingredients as often as possible. Our bodies haven’t evolved much over the past hundred years, but more and more foods are being manufactured with marketing and shelf stability—rather than digestibility or nutritional value—in mind. Stick to natural snacks whenever possible.
- Keep it simple. I’m a minimalist when it comes to food, and I love to bring this point of view to life in my snacking selections. A simple snack like sliced apples and peanut butter can help keep hangry you from coming out.
- Healthy fats like nut butters, nuts, and avocados can help you feel full for longer without turning to simple carbs or snacks that are loaded with salt or sugars.
- Prep snacks early. Store sliced fruits and vegetables in the fridge so you’re able to serve them with hummus or another dip of your choice on demand. This will prevent panic and regrettable snacking decisions when hunger strikes!
- Keep healthy snack items in your line of sight. In our house, we leave fruit out on the tabletops, counters, and in a hanging basket. This makes for a convenient and healthy grab-and-go routine—no packaged food necessary.
- Drink lots of water. Thirst is often misinterpreted as hunger, so load up on lots of H2O.
- Load your desk drawer, backpack, or diaper bag with nuts or another long-lasting healthy snacking option. I love to keep a few RXBARs in my desk drawer for days when I’m stuck at my computer.
- When it comes to portion sizes, use your hand to measure. A thumb size is roughly an ounce of nut butter, four dice is an ounce of nuts or raisins, and a lightbulb is roughly an ounce of popcorn or pretzels. Keeping these portion sizes in mind encourages a better understanding of what you’re eating.
- It’s worth throwing in a reminder to prioritize balanced meals—complete with protein, carbs, and veggies. This helps to curb the mindless snacking that we want to avoid.
- Get enough sleep. Yes, sleeping well can impact our snacking. I find that I tend to mindlessly snack when I haven’t had a good night’s sleep the night before. On days that I have had proper rest, I’m more mindful of how I nourish my body.