There is such a thing as “healthy snacking,” but there is a caveat. As long as you are eating nutrient-dense snacks, you can avoid over-eating and eating the wrong kinds of foods. However, there is a proper time to snack, and that’s what we want to talk about today.
It’s a given that processed foods and fast foods should no longer be on our minds. They are cancer-causing (proven!) and they have absolutely zero nutritional benefits to us.
We should also say that even if you’re eating organic, whole-food, generally healthy meals and working out at least five times a week for 30 minutes, your snacking still needs to be controlled. Yes, though we are a healthy snacking company, we have to say this: If you are snacking too often, your metabolism will get thrown off.
(That’s why we also don’t pack on the snacks in your monthly box. There’s a reason for keeping them small. We’ll get to that in a bit.)
If you want to snack, remember these key pointers and you should be able to snack without interfering with your busy schedule, the quality of your exercise, and your meals.
Tips for purposeful snacking
- Eat snacks at the proper TIME. We know our boxes are filled with healthy alternatives to the usual snack foods out there. But even if you are snacking on healthy foods, even that must be done at proper meal times, and in proper portions. For instance, if you know that a peanut butter slug is 88 calories and is a great protein boost, eat it immediately after your 30 minute gym workout. Tip: Check out My Fitness Pal and key in any of our snack brands there to see how many calories you’re actually taking in. If a snack contains more calories than your level of activity can burn, we suggest eating that snack after your next bout of exercise so that you don’t put on extra pounds or inches.
- Go for high-protein and for good fat. Good fat (like Pics Peanut Butter, for instance) keeps you full longer and helps to build muscles if taken at the proper time after working out. The same goes for healthy nuts like almonds, or a can of tuna, or some eggs and avocado. Get your palette used to eating protein and good fats, and again, snack only after a certain level of physical activity.
- Cut back on sugar, even the good kind. We have some sweet alternatives in our snack boxes, but there is a proper time to snack on these. Since even natural sugars can convert into fat, we suggest that you eat snacks like the raw cacao or the dried fruit within 30 minutes of your workout, as a recovery food, coupled with a health, high protein and complex carb meal.
- Don’t eat sugar alone, if you’re hungry. We have a Whitworth’s 100-calorie pack of dried fruit, yes, but the best time to take that is after a great amount of physical activity. We don’t advise taking it during your most “blah” time at the office. If you are hungry during times like these, still go for the protein, and make it totally sugarless. A pack of Rebel Mylk is a good idea, as it will boost your protein and make you full without giving you that infamous sugar crash.
- Ban any and all processed carbs. This means avoiding almost everything in the supermarket. Seriously. If your goal is to have more energy so that your body can burn more stored fat, then anything processed and refined is going to work against those goals. Bottom line? Say good bye to white bread, anything white flour based, anything resembling potato chips or junk food chips. It’s hard, yes, but you will seriously be doing your body a favor and you will feel better.
Here’s a suggested schedule for when to eat your healthy snacks.
- AM - Breakfast of eggs and fruit. Have a box of Rebel Kitchen mylk.
- Lunch - Salad, grilled chicken, and any healthy snack from your Raw Bites box
- Midafternoon - If you are preparing to go to the gym, you can eat a snack to give you energy
- Dinner - Black or red rice, fish or chicken, lightly sauteed veggies, and tea