By Jen Stein MS, RD
It’s that time of year again—the long days of summer are becoming shorter, there is coolness in the air and the kids are heading back to school. Now is the perfect time to focus on a healthy eating plan for everyone. At the Weight Loss Institute of New Jersey, we want to help you get healthy as well as boost your energy with healthy snacking suggestions. Here are some tips to smart snacking for adults and kids:
- Think of snacks as mini-meals that you can fit into your healthy eating plan without busting your daily calorie “budget”.
- If your next meal is going to be within 1 or 2 hours, you should choose a snack with 50-100 calories. If your next meal won’t be for more than 2 hours, 150-200 calories would be appropriate.
- Snack only when hungry and fight to the urge to nibble by engaging in another activity such as going for a walk or talking to a friend.
- Watch portion sizes and be aware that eating from a multiple-serving package can lead to over-eating; try measuring out single servings into a small baggie.
Snacks with 200 calories or less:
One tablespoon of peanut butter on apple slices.
- Three cups air-popped popcorn sprinkled with parmesan cheese.
- Veggie snack of 6 baby carrots, 10 sugar snap peas, 6 cherry tomatoes and 2 tablespoons with reduced-fat ranch dressing.
- Small baked potato with salsa and 1 ounce of low-fat cheese.
- Fruit smoothie made by blending 1 cup of fat-free milk with ½ cup of a frozen fruit.
Snacks with 200-300 calories for active kids and adults:
Whole wheat pita cut into wedges with 2 tablespoons hummus for a dip.
- Yogurt parfait made by layering 6 ounces of fat-free yogurt, ½ cup of berries and ¼ cup of granola.
- Trail mix made of 20 almonds, a miniature box of raisins, and ¼ cup of sunflower seeds.
- Veggie pizzas made using a split whole wheat English muffin. Top with 2 tablespoons of low-fat cream cheese, ½ cup of diced fresh veggies and one ounce of low-fat mozzarella cheese.
- Banana split using a banana sliced length-wise and topped with ½ cup of frozen yogurt and a tablespoon of chopped nuts.
The Weight Loss Institute of New Jersey is available to help members of the community achieve their weight loss goals. Whether you need to lose 10 pounds or 300 pounds, the multi-disciplinary team of physicians, dietitians, nurses, exercise physiologists and psychologists is available to support you on your weight loss journey. The Weight Loss Institute of New Jersey has locations at Saint Barnabas Medical Center, Monmouth Medical Center, Clara Maass Medical Center and Newark Beth Israel Medical Center. For more information, call 1-888-724-7123.
Adapted from healthy eating tips from American Dietetic Association website www.eatright.org
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