Healthy snacks will make or break your journey to health and happiness! You need to have the good ones on had to stave of the munchies and over-eating at meal times. But how do you know what’s good? I love this post 44 Healthy Snacks from Happy People Losing Weight because it contains so many good ideas! But how do you know how to make you’re own easy and healthy snack recipes? Read on for a few tips and one of my favorite strategies…the rule of 3!
I got a message from a life long friend of mine a while ago. She follows my blog, so she’ll be happy to know she is 100% responsible for the inspiration behind this one. Here is the message I got from her:
OK, gotta pick your brain. It’s crunch time. trying to get the last 10lbs off in 8 weeks – family trip to Orlando 🙂 – and my biggest hurdle is always an afternoon snack. so I gotta ask…What are some of your nutritious snack must-haves?
I love this challenge! I just happened to be brunching with my overly qualified, incredibly fit and talented friend Justin. At the time, he was the registered dietitian for the LA Dodgers. What a perfect opprotinity to pick his brain for advice. So he gave me the “Rule of 3” as his response.
- Every 3 hours
- Eat each of the 3 macro nutrients
- With at least 3 colors
**I’ll add the weight concious calorie limit of 150 calories too.
It’s so simple, and here is why this formula works:
- By eating every 3 hours, you’re never starving, making it far less likely you’ll binge at your next meal, regulates your blood sugar and staves off the munchies
- By getting in all the macronutrients, you get it all! Carbohydrates give you instant energy, protein to repair and grow and fat to make you feel full and satisfied.
- By getting in 3 colors, this helps ensure you’re eating natural, fresh produce supplying your body with essential vitamins and minerals to maintain optimal health.
And if you meet all the criteria, you’re nearly guaranteed to find a balanced, healthy, nutritious snack to fuel your body properly. It’s almost impossible to cheat the system.
Caloric Guidelines to Follow for Weight Loss:
You will want to watch portion sizes though, and aim to have all snacks to be 150-200 calories. This allows you to have breakfast, lunch and dinner with a calorie range of 250-350. These guidelines will ensure you get to eat six high quality meals and stay in a calorie range 1200-1600 per day. Which, depending on your body composition and activity level, should yield some pretty killer weight loss.
So what is the formula for easy and healthy snack recipes?
Well it’s going to depend on what your favorite foods are, if your a sweet and savory snacker and what you have access to throughout the day. I’d suggest this fun little exercise to help you come up with plenty of great ideas that suit your taste and lifestyle.
- Make a list of at least 5 of your favorite proteins. Some good examples would be Greek yogurt, low fat cheese, shrimp, sliced turkey, cottage cheese, soy milk, etc.
- Make a list of at least 5 of your favorite carbohydrates. Good examples could be popcorn, crackers, fruits, granola, bread, cereal, starchy veggies (peas, corn, carrots), etc.
- Make a list of some healthy fats you like. Good examples could be flax seeds, olive oil, nuts, peanut butter, avocado, etc.
Want some fuel to get your creative side burning? Here are two sample recipes.
Sample easy and healthy snack recipes:
SAVORY: Fancy Ants on a Log
- 3 leaves of endive (green)
- 1 1/2 T hummus (yellow)
- 3 large pitted Greek olives (indigo)
Directions: wash the endive. Place 1/2 Tbsp of hummus in each leaf. Cut each olive in 3. Place the chopped olives on top of the hummus.
Nutrition: 140 calories, 10g fat, 11g carbohydrate, 4g protein
SWEET: Berry Pizza Thin
- 1/2 Oroweat honey wheat sandwich thin
- 1/4 cup low fat Ricotta cheese
- 5 raspberries (red)
- 5 blueberries (blue)
- 1 tsp honey (yellow)
- Pinch of Cinnamon
Directions: Toast the sandwich thin. Top with Ricotta. Strategically place your “pepperoni” raspberries and “sausage” blueberries. Drizzle with honey and dust with cinnamon and nutmeg. If you find this too messy, you can also mix the honey and the spices in with the Ricotta. If you have a toaster oven, you can assemble the entire pizza, then toast. It’s an ewwy-gooey mess, but delicious none-the-less!
Nutrition: 130 calories, 3g fat, 23g carbohydrate, 8g protein.
Got it? Now go get it and tell us about it!
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