This blog was written by our Campus Ambassador, Joanna Starling.
Ever notice how you eat more when you’re distracted? Studies show that distracted eating tends to pack on the pounds, but if you have to eat while you’re studying make sure you’re at least fueling yourself for a solid study session. Try out some of these healthy snacks next time you’re hitting the books! Now you just have to find out what you’re hungry for…
For Something Crunchy
1. Apples or celery with peanut butter
Peanut butter is a great source of protein, so it fills you up and keeps you energized. Mixed with celery or apple slices, it’s the perfect mixture of crunchy and creamy!
2. Carrots, Cucumbers or Celery with Ranch dip
Often times, I just want something crunchy to keep my mind alert. In these cases, I don’t want the calories so much as I want to keep myself awake. If you’re in that same position reach for a vegetable and some light Ranch dip. Vegetables are extremely fibrous and nutritious, but low in fat and calorie content- perfect for a distracted eater.
3. Dry cereal
You’d be surprised how long a bowl of cereal can last sans milk! I definitely recommend snacking on Cheerios (I prefer Honey Nut) or any of the Kashi brand cereals (my favorite is Kashi Crisp). Both of those selections are a great source of whole grains, and most Kashi cereals have high protein and fiber contents.
For Something Salty
1. Pretzel crisps or Reduced Fat Cheez-its
Both of these choices are a great alternative to potato chips, which often have quite a bit of saturated fat and leave you feeling hungry even after demolishing a bag. Reduced fat Cheez-its are currently available in two flavors, Original and White Cheddar and have less fat and calories from fat than original Cheez-its, but all the flavor. If you like chips, try out Pretzel crisps. They have a similar appearance, but have fewer calories per serving and are fat free.
2. Wheat thins and string cheese
Wheat Thins are another great crunchy snack. I usually buy them reduced fat as well, but regardless they are 100% whole grain and are great with String cheese (protein and calcium) and lunch meat!
3. Mixed Nuts with dried fruit
Honestly most nuts are high in fat, but the good kind of fat- Monosaturated fat. So no you shouldn’t eat a whole thing of trail mix and call it a day, but nuts such as almonds, cashews, pecans and walnuts are good for you and contain high levels of magnesium which your body needs in order to keep your heart pumping normally, and can help strengthen bones and muscle control. Add in some dried apricots, cranberries or raisins to make a healthy trail mix.
For Something Sweet
1. Smoothie- OJ and frozen fruit (Great tip = freeze grapes!)
My go-to morning snack is a homemade smoothie. You can buy frozen fruit near the ice-cream/novelties section at the grocery store, and once blended with calcium enriched orange juice, you’ve got a smoothie as good as any Jamba Juice. Also, I like to freeze grapes and eat them separately- it tastes like candy, but it’s good for you- I still don’t know how that works.
2. Yogurt with oats and blueberries
Yoplait makes a great line of 90 calorie yogurts, with all sorts of fun flavors. I like to top mine off with dried oats and blueberries to get some grains and antioxidants.
3. Chocolate Chip Granola Bar
Old faithful, the ever popular Granola bar. In all seriousness, they can make for a great snack, and most these days are high in fiber and whole grains, just look out for ones that can be too high in saturated fat.
Happy Snacking, and remember to be aware of your surroundings and to be considerate- if you’re snacking in a library, it’s probably not a good idea to pack celery or apples! ☺