1. Hard boiled eggs: Place eggs in boiling water and cook for 8-10 minutes for medium eggs, or 10-12 minutes for large eggs. “You can also get fancy and make a deviled egg,” says Kimberly Gomer, director of nutrition at Body Beautiful Miami. To make a deviled egg, take a hard-boiled egg and mix the yolk with mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, salt and pepper. Add a sprinkle of paprika on top. “You don’t need to measure the ingredients – just mix by your taste buds,” adds Gomer.
2. Mixed nuts: “A handful of unsalted nuts like almonds, pistachios, cashews, etc. are also good treats,” says Blanca Garcia, RDN, a nutrition specialist for HealthCanal. Nuts, she says, are typically rich in protein and mostly contain unsaturated fats.
3. Veggies and dip: Buy pre-cut veggies like baby carrots, or slice up your veggies of choice (jicama, peppers, celery and cucumbers). Then, use your dip of choice – either hummus, which Gomer says is a nice protein addition, or guacamole, which can be packed with healthy fat from avocado.
4. Cottage cheese: This, says Gomer, is full of protein and provides a nice dose of calcium. Eat it by itself or top it with berries, peaches or fruit preserves for a satisfying snack.
5. Turkey roll-up with mustard or mayo: For a quick snack on the go, grab a slice of turkey or other deli meat, squirt your desired condiment inside, like mustard or mayo, and roll it up.
6. Greek yogurt and berries: “Greek yogurt is an excellent source of protein, and as we age, our protein needs increase in order to preserve lean muscle mass,” says Rachel Dyckman, RDN, owner of Rachel Dyckman Nutrition. Additionally, yogurt is rich in calcium, and consuming adequate calcium helps to support bone health and prevent fractures, she says. Opting for plain varieties of Greek yogurt helps to cut back on unnecessary added sugars, but you can add berries to your yogurt for additional flavor. “Blueberries are naturally sweet and have anti-inflammatory properties due to their high antioxidant content,” adds Dyckman.
7. Baked sweet potato: Wash the outside of the sweet potato and pop it in the oven for 45-60 minutes at 400 degrees. Top your sweet potato with cinnamon, cottage cheese, butter, or sour cream. “These can be baked ahead of time and then heated in the microwave for a quick and filling snack,” says Gomer. “Sweet potatoes are high in fiber and antioxidants, which protect our body from free radical damage and promote a healthy gut and brain,” she adds. They're also rich in beta carotene.
8. Edamame: You may have snacked on this at a sushi restaurant, but you can also buy it and eat at home. “A soy protein, edamame is rich in healthy fiber, antioxidants, and vitamin K,” says Gomer.
9. Chia seed pudding: Chia seeds are full of fiber, which may help to lower LDL cholesterol and slow down digestion, Gomer says, and may also help with preventing blood sugar spikes after meals and promoting a feeling of fullness. Plus, with your choice of liquid and sweetener, you can easily adapt the recipe to various dietary requirements. This includes gluten-free (which it is naturally), dairy-free, vegan, keto, whole30, refined sugar-free, etc. Here is Gomer’s basic recipe, which you can tweak and add different toppings to:
- 1 ½ tablespoons chia seeds
- ½ cup milk: You can use dairy milk or a non-dairy milk of choice
- Sweetener: You can use a drizzle of maple syrup, or honey, agave, or a sugar-free sweetener like monk fruit sweetener or stevia.
- Vanilla extract: (optional)
- Combine chia seeds and milk.
- Then, set it aside in the refrigerator to thicken for a minimum of 30 minutes, but 2 hours is the optimal amount. Best to make it the night before.
10. Tuna, salmon or sardines: For another protein-rich snack, you can purchase tuna, salmon or sardines in a can or pouch. “Mix it with mayo and seasonings and eat it on cucumber slices or stuffed in a red pepper,” says Gomer. You can also serve it over a slice of toasted whole grain bread.
11. Popcorn with nut butter and chocolate: Craving a sweet and savory snack? “Mix together a tablespoon of melted chocolate chips and nut butter (peanut butter and almond butter work well), then drizzle over a bowl of unsalted or low-sodium popcorn,” says Jen Hernandez, RD, founder and CEO of Plant-Powered Kidneys. The popcorn, she says, provides whole grains and fiber, while the nut butter provides some more fiber and protein.
12. Crackers and spinach dip: “Mix some thawed frozen spinach into low-fat plain Greek yogurt, then season with garlic powder, onion powder, a little salt, and pepper for a savory snack,” says Hernandez. Greek yogurt provides protein to help fill you up, and spinach, she adds, is packed with nutrients like magnesium, vitamin C and potassium.
13. Roasted chickpeas: Take a can of chickpeas, drain and rinse, then toss with your favorite spices. Roast in the oven at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until crispy to your liking, says Hernandez. Chickpeas provide both protein and fiber.
14. Frozen grapes: This is the perfect treat on a warm day. “Simply wash and dry your grapes, then spread out on a baking sheet,” says Hernandez. “Place in the freezer for several hours or overnight, then move into a freezer bag or container for storage.”
15. Rice cakes and berries: “Rice cakes are back in a big way!” says Hernandez. “But no longer are they eaten by themselves.” Use them like toast and top with cream cheese or yogurt and some thawed berries for a delicious treat.
16. A fruit and veggie smoothie: Smoothies can be a healthy snack, as long as you don’t go crazy with fruit. To make things healthier, toss some veggies in there. “Vegetables like spinach, carrots, and beetroots work well with fruits,” explains Garcia. “Fruit can be anything of your choice.” Adding Greek yogurt to the mixture will make it thicker and creamier. A little honey can help balance the flavor too. Blend the fruits, vegetables, Greek yogurt, honey and ice in a blender until smooth.
17. Homemade popsicles: “A popsicle made with fresh cucumber and apple is a great combination. Oranges and carrots also taste yummy or veggie greens (kale or baby spinach) and bananas,” says Catherine Gervacio, RND, nutrition writer for LivingFit. These healthy treats are packed with antioxidants and properties like beta-carotene, which Gervacio says can be good for your eyes. Blend all the ingredients together and insert into a popsicle mold, then place in the freezer.
18. Apples with nut butter: “Apples can help to support bowel regularity, since they’re high in fiber,” says Dyckman. Fiber, she adds, can also help with weight management, blood sugar regulation, and promoting a healthy blood lipid profile. Adding a spoonful of peanut butter to an apple can help to provide heart-healthy monounsaturated fats and encourage stable blood sugar by slowing the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream. “Those with difficulty chewing can opt for unsweetened applesauce with peanut butter instead,” explains Dyckman.
19. Guacamole with sliced red bell pepper: “Guacamole is a delicious source of healthy fats, fiber and vitamin E, which is an antioxidant that helps to combat oxidative stress associated with aging,” says Dyckman. Red bell peppers actually contain more vitamin C than oranges and can help to support healthy immune function. “Since we need vitamin C to produce collagen, it also can help with wound healing and promote skin health,” Dyckman adds.
20. Oatmeal and fruit: Yes, it’s a breakfast food, but oatmeal can also be a lower calorie snack. “Add colorful slices of fresh fruit on top and if desired, drizzle with honey to add a little sweetness,” suggests Garcia. Adding milk will also provide protein, calcium, phosphorus and vitamin D. “Oats are high in fiber and fruits are a great source of additional vitamins,” Garcia adds.
The above content is shared for educational and informational purposes only. References to specific products above do not constitute an express or implied endorsement or recommendation by Brookdale with respect to such products. You must consult your doctor before beginning any diet, exercise, or fitness program, taking any additional or discontinuing any existing medications, or acting on any content on this website, especially if you have a medical condition. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on our site.
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