When you get the munchies, don't sabotage your fat loss results with high calorie and nutritionally vacant snacks. Instead, reach for these quick & easy crunchy snacks - no preparation required!
Ideally, we should snack on vegetables such as cucumbers, carrots, cherry tomatoes, peppers, etc. But I'm a woman, and I know what it's like to crave conventional snack food, especially during "that time of the month". So if you are not willing to chow down on veggies, then I have presented 13 other options. And they just happen to be low carb because that's what everyone requested! I'd like to clarify that there's nothing wrong with carbs, provided you meet all of your macro and micronutrient needs while staying within your caloric limits.
Question: How does one cut calories without eating less?
Answer: Swap your high calorie junk foods (cookies, potato chips, candy, crackers) with filling lower calorie foods, such as foods that are HIGH in FIBER. High fiber foods, such as vegetables make you feel fuller longer because they take more time to digest. Furthermore, high fiber foods are typically lower in calories, which means you eat more generous portions without feeling deprived. This is the notion behind the Volumetrics diet, which is based on the principle that eating low-calorie foods (eg. vegetables) that make you feel full can aid in weight loss. Since these foods are high in fiber and water, you can eat generous portions without feeling deprived or hungry. So go ahead and eat your vegetables! It’s relatively easy to adhere to a volumetrics diet over the long haul because you will never feel deprived.
If you want to learn how to manipulate your tendencies to overeat in a way that doesn't sabotage your sanity or fat loss, then Click here to subscribe to my FREE Intermittent Fasting Tutorials.
1. Ice Water
Sometimes when you think you are hungry, you are actually just thirsty. So have a glass of ice water before resorting to snacking. Besides, did you know ice-cold water will cause your body to burn more calories? Why? Because your metabolic rate will increase in order to warm the ice water to your body’s natural temperature. Research suggests that drinking eight 8oz glasses of ice water can burn an extra 70 calories a day.*
2. Almonds: Portion-controlled Snack Pack:
- Almonds contain more fiber (~3g/ounce) than any other nut.
- Consider purchasing 100-calorie raw almond snack packs to assist with portion control. Inattention to portion size is a major contributor to weight gain, regardless of whether the food ingested is healthy. If you consume more calories than you burn through activity, you will store fat.
- Although nuts provide an excellent source of heart-healthy fats, protein and fiber, they pack a calorie wallop. Epidemiologic data shows; however, that higher nut consumption is not associated with an increased likelihood of weight gain among women.1 It turns out that not all of the fat calories in nuts are entirely absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract. Some of those calories are ultimately passed through the body undigested and flushed down the toilet! Research reveals that up to 15% of the lipid content of whole nuts may be lost in your stool.2, 3
- Do not be mislead into thinking: “Because some of the fat calories in nuts will be excreted from my body, I can therefore eat way more nuts and not gain weight.” Calories do count, even if they are healthy! Most studies cite the recommended nut consumption as 1 ounce 2-5 times a week.
- If you're nutty about nuts, then read my article, Do You Eat Too Many Nuts?
Savi Seeds are also called Sachi Inchi Seeds or Inca Peanuts. This superfood from the Peruvian Amazon contains a high concentration of polyunsaturated fatty acids. In fact, they are the world’s richest source of plant-based omega-3! Not only do they contain a proper balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, but they are also gluten-free, high in fiber and a complete protein source. These seeds are crunchy in texture and boast a nutty flavour. A 10g serving has 70 calories, 5 g of fat, 1 g of carbohydrate, 1 g of fiber, no sugar, no sodium and 3 g of protein.
5. Quest Nutrition Bars I am also a fan of Quest Nutrition's Protein Bars and Peanut Butter Cups. Quest Bars have one of the best nutritional profiles of any protein bar on the market. They are gluten-free, contain 20 g of high protein, between 2 and 4g non-fiber carbs and no trans fat. I always keep a Quest Bar in my purse... just in case! 6. GG Bran Scandinavian Crisp Bread
Not only does dietary fiber alleviate constipation, but it is also a beneficial part of a weight loss regime. As fiber passes through the digestive system, it absorbs water and swells like a sponge1. Since the fiber is so filling, it decreases appetite, causing us to eat less. Weight loss is further enhanced because the calories locked in the fiber cannot be released by human digestion1.
This crispbread is from Norway, and is prepared from 85% unprocessed bran, with rye flour and water. When you eat GG Scandinavian Bran Crispbread, it quickly absorbs more moisture and satisfies your appetite1. It boasts the lowest in calories (25 calories a slice) and net carbs (3.5 g per slice) of any bread product on the market.1
To learn more about Net Carbs, click here to read my post, "Fiber Facts and Net Carbs".
7. Dry Roasted Edamame
- Edamame is the only vegetable that offers a complete protein profile equivalent to that of both meat and eggs.
- Edamame is rich in calcium, iron, zinc, and B vitamins.
- Edamame is the richest dietary source of isoflavones, which act as Phytoestrogens.
- Ingredients: 100% Natural ingredients: soybeans, sea salt, wasabi powder (wasabi oil, dextrin).
- Nutrition Facts: Per 1/4 cup (33 g) Calories 130 Fat 16g Saturated Fat 0.5g Cholesterol 0mg Sodium 130mg Carbohydrate 9g Fiber 7g Sugar 0g Fiber 7g Protein 14g
8. Kale Chips:
- I'm a kale chip addict! I make them all the time in my food dehydrator using nutritional yeast to impart a cheesy flavour.
- But when I'm pressed for time, I just order Kale chips online.
- Kale chips are a healthy alternative to chips and nachos: kale chips offer the same satisfying crunch but with much less calories and sodium than junk food.
- One cup of Fresh Kale (~100g) has < 50 calories, 1 g fat, 10 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 3 g protein & 40mg sodium. They have no cholesterol or saturated fat.
- Want to try my favourite recipe? Click for Pizza Kale Chips Recipe!
9. Whey Protein Shakes: Whey protein provides a delicious, fast and easy way to fuel your body with protein. I'm a fan of BSN Syntha-6 Whey, as well as BSN Isoburn Whey because of the incredible taste!
10. Matcha Green Tea
Drinking matcha green tea can prevent body fat accumulation and promote weight loss. A 1999 study featured in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition demonstrated that green tea extract rich in catechins has thermogenic properties and promotes fat oxidation beyond that explained by the tea’s caffeine content. It was found that consuming green tea increased thermogenesis (the body’s rate of burning calories) from 8-10% to 35-43% of daily energy expenditure. Another study demonstrated that exercising immediately after drinking matcha green tea resulted in 25% more fat burning during exercise. Both studies suggest matcha green tea can enhance both resting metabolic rate and fat burning, making it a useful addition to any weight loss program.
11. Stevita Stevia Drink Mix
- Stevia extract is a NATURAL sweetener that is 300 times sweeter than sugar. It contains no sugar, and unlike artificial sweeteners (eg. Aspartame), it is not derived artificially from chemicals. Stevia is derived from the extremely sweet leaves of the stevia plant. Reference
- Stevita Drink Mix contains ZERO calories, ZERO SUGAR, ZERO CARBOHYDRATES, ZERO CAFFEINE and WILL NOT SPIKE BLOOD SUGARS! So not only is stevia a guilt-free way to satisfy your sweet tooth, but it is also not going to cause tooth decay. It’s also a great option for diabetics. Reference
12a) Xylitol Gum
- There is sugar-free gum on the market containing no artificial sweeteners, but rather xylitol. Since it is sugar-free, it may aid in weight loss. Xylitol is known to reduce dental cavities and decrease plaque.
- Research by Hetherington & Boyland on the short term effects of chewing gum on snack intake and appetite shows that chewing gum before snacking helps reduce hunger, diminishes cravings for sweets and decreases snack intake by 36 calories.
- Chewing sugar-free gum for 20 minutes after eating can help prevent tooth decay. Chewing gum stimulates your salivary flow. Saliva defends against tooth decay by neutralizing plaque acids, remineralizing enamel and washing away food particles. Cavities are caused when plaque bacteria breaks down sugar. This produces acid that destroys enamel. Sugarless gum contains a sugar-free sweetener called Xylitol. Xylitol is a naturally occurring alcohol found in most plant material. Unlike sugar, Xylitol cannot be broken down by bacteria, so no enamel-destroying acid is produced. Chewing Xylitol-containing gum 5 times a day has been shown to reduce plaque and make it easier to remove plaque when brushing. Xylitol has no known toxicity in humans, however, it has a laxative effect in larger doses because sugar alcohols are not fully broken down during digestion.
- Note: Chewing gum can cause intestinal bloating and gas. When you chew gum, you inhale extra air into your digestive system. If you are prone to bloating, then avoid chewing gum.
12b) Xyla Xylitol Mints
As a recovering licorice addict: these are my secret weapon! Plus as a dentist, I know the benefits of Xylitol in preventing tooth decay! Hooray!
- 97% pure Xylitol
- 100% Natural
- North American Birch Xylitol Sweetened
- .5g of Xylitol per piece
- Helps prevent cavities
- Safe for diabetics
13) Beanitos Chips
It's no secret that beans are loaded with health benefits. Thankfully, someone made chips out of beans!
Beanitos Chips are to die for! They are loaded with protein, have a low glycemic index and are high in fibre. Beanitos are a delicious portable snack that satisfy without the empty calories of conventional potato chips. I recommend the "better cheddar" pinto bean chips.
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