The body's energy and blood sugar levels fluctuate between meals, so snacking is important for many people. However, although snacks with a lot of sugar and fat may initially give a quick fix of energy, that fast energy often turns into a sluggish feeling. Healthy snacks on the other hand, give the body the nutrition it needs to maintain energy levels throughout the day. Also, controlling your hunger levels throughout the day can help stop overeating later. Here are some healthy snacks to make to enjoy at home, work or school:
Look to your leftovers for some healthy snacks to make. Start with a whole wheat tortilla or pita. Fill pita halves, or fill and roll up tortillas, with leftover chili. You can add a little grated cheese for extra flavor as well as calcium. This filling snack can be heated up or eaten cold. Alternatively, you can fill a tortilla or pita with peanut butter and sliced banana. That is great to take on the go with you as it doesn't need to be kept cold.
You can also heat up a small serving of leftover mashed potatoes, pasta or rice and top with some heated chili or baked beans for a hot satisfying snack that's a perfect "mini meal" with a glass of milk. As an alternative to a baked potato stuffed with cheese and broccoli, you can just top your small serving of leftover mashed potatoes with leftover cooked broccoli and a little Parmesan and/or other cheese on top. When you heat this in a microwave or other oven, take care not to overcook the broccoli.
Cold healthy snacks to make and take with you include bran muffins and fruit salad. Bran muffins are a tasty way to get fiber and you can add what you like so that you can keep your allergies and food preferences in mind. Nuts and dried fruit are common additions to bran muffins. Fruit salad can be made with any combinations of fruit you enjoy. You can place the fruit salad into a container in the refrigerator the night before to take with you the next morning to enjoy as a snack later in the day. You don't have to use apples or bananas as they do tend to get brown and mushy, but you can choose other fruits that hold up well.
If you have a sweet tooth, you can still find healthy snacks to make that taste satisfying. Cinnamon and fruit make healthy substitutes for sugar and sweets. You can blend grapes into plain yogurt and sweeten with cinnamon for a great chilled, refreshing snack.