Quick guide for smart snackers

Enjoying a couple of snacks every day can have some benefits for your health as long as you have them in an intelligent way. Planning your snacks can help you tame your hunger, increase your energy levels and prevent over-eating during meal time. Smart snacking can also help you keep your blood sugar levels stable, especially if you have diabetes. Here are a few tips that you can keep in mind when planning your next smart snack:

(1) Go for healthy choices. Favor fresh fruits and vegetables, or combine fruits with yogurt or a tablespoon of peanut butter.

(2) Eat a small handful of nuts, such as almonds, pecans or walnuts. They have less than 15 grams of carbohydrate and make you feel full.

(3) Fiber rhymes with smart snacking, so don’t forget to add wheat germ into yogurt and eat whole-grain breads and cereals.

(4) Eat filling foods, by picking up a mix of protein and carbohydrate with plenty of fiber (hard-boiled egg or reduced-fat cheese are good options).

(5) Mind your portions, by using a smaller plate or bowl when you choose to snack.

(6) Avoid continuous snacking and plan ahead only a couple of healthy snacks a day.

(7) Preparation is key so make sure you have raw cut-up vegetables in the fridge. You can dip them into low-fat yogurt or hummus.

And don’t forget: moderation is the key to smart snacking! It is normal to feel hungrier at certain times, but knowing how much food your need to satisfy your hunger is very important....