Snacks don’t have to be weight loss killers. If you’re trying to shed a few pounds, the key is smart snacking, not giving it up altogether. “Snacking is an opportunity to fuel your body between meals,” nutritionist Rania Batayneh, author of The One One One Diet, told Health. Cut out the late afternoon nibbles, and you may end up raiding the bread basket at dinner. Rather than chowing down on chips or a candy bar, try these five healthier snack swaps to keep your weight loss plan on track.
1. Savory Spiced Nuts
Substitute for: Salty snack mixes
Prepackaged snack mixes are often loaded with salt. A 1.75-ounce package of traditional Chex Mix contains 370 milligrams of sodium, 15% of your recommended daily intake. Salt by itself won’t make you gain weight, but it can make you feel less trim. “Eating salt does not directly increase body fat, but it can increase water retention, which would show up on the scale,” Lisa Moscovitz, R.D., CEO of the NY Nutrition Group, told Shape.
Instead of the snack mix, reach for a handful of these savory spiced nuts, which are low in salt. Fatty nuts are high in calories, though, so make sure that you watch your portions. But don’t let the calorie-count scare you off entirely — when consumed in moderation, nuts may actually help you lose weight, studies have found. Recipe from Food.com.
- Large egg white
- 1 tablespoon water
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon curry
- ½ teaspoon garlic salt
- ¼ teaspoon ginger
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 cups mixed nuts
Directions: Preheat oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit. In a bowl, whisk together the egg white and water until foamy. Toss the egg and water mixture with the nuts. Pour the nuts into a strainer and strain for 3 minutes.
Place the nuts in a brown paper bag, add the spices, and shake until the nuts are fully coated with the seasonings.
Spread the nuts on a cookie sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, then stir. Lower the oven temperature to 225 degrees Fahrenheit and continue baking for another hour, stirring occasionally.
Turn the oven off and cool the nuts inside, with the oven door propped open. When nuts are completely cool, remove from oven and store in an airtight container.