The following article was written by Heinen’s Chief Dietitian, Melanie Jatsek RD, LD.
There are two types of snacks: supportive and unsupportive.
Supportive snacks fuel your body with the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants needed to give you just the right amount of energy while promoting good health. They are the foods featured in the Club Fx Pillars: fruits, veggies, whole grains and nuts and seeds.
Unsupportive snacks drag you down! They tend to be highly processed and loaded with salt, sugar and unhealthy fat. Think chips, crackers, cookies and candy bars. These foods are the opposite of satisfying, in fact their addictive nature can cause you to eat more!
My top five snack picks at Heinen’s earned their rank because they are travel friendly, whole food-based, satisfying, minimally processed and have low-to-no added sugar.
Brad’s Veggie Chips
Club Fx Pillars 1, 2, and 3
Brad’s has totally reinvented the cracker and it checks all of the craving boxes too: crunchy and savory with just a touch of salt. With whole food ingredients like carrots, kale, flax seeds, buckwheat groats (the hulled seeds of the buckwheat plant) and sesame seeds, this gluten-free cracker is both satisfying and delicious.
MacroLife Naturals Macro Greens
Club Fx Pillars 1, 2, and 6
MacroLife Naturals Macro Greens is a true green superfood containing 38 ingredients that feed the body at a cellular level, nourishing it with antioxidants, co-nutrients, enzymes, vitamins, minerals and amino acids. Macro Greens is also a great source of friendly bacteria, containing 18 billion CFUs (colony forming units) per scoop. Just add a scoop to a Mason jar, fill it with water, screw on the lid and give it a good shake!
Over Easy Breakfast Bars
Club Fx Pillar 5
Although convenient, one major downside of nutrition bars is added sugar. Some have upwards of 20 grams of added sugar per bar. Over Easy Breakfast Bars have no more than eight grams of added sugar per bar in the form of honey. The addition of oats, nuts, nut butter and egg whites give it just the right amount of carbohydrate, protein and fat—like a bowl of oatmeal with a side of eggs! I love that I can recognize every ingredient on the label as real food. To enjoy as a snack, cut in half and eat one today and the other half tomorrow.
Navitas Organics Power Snacks
Club Fx Pillars 3 and 6
These flavorful bite-size snacks are made of dates, superfoods and seeds to give you convenient energy whenever you need it. Enjoy two or three squares with a cup of coffee or tea!
Go Raw Organic Sprouted Pumpkin Seeds and Sunflower Seeds
Club Fx Pillar 3
Nuts and seeds offer a nice blend of healthy fat and protein, making them the perfect snack to tide you over until mealtime. Go Raw takes it one step further than other brands by sprouting their seeds. Their soaking and sprouting process mimics the natural germination process and “activates” their seeds to provide better digestion and nutrient absorption. I find that a quarter cup is the perfect snack-size portion. To keep from going overboard, leave a ¼ cup measuring cup inside of the bag for responsible serving.
Snacks are a wonderful opportunity to fill your body with good nutrition, but it’s important to schedule them like you would a meal. Don’t be fooled into believing you must snack between every meal. I recommend plugging in a snack if the span between breakfast and lunch, and lunch and dinner exceeds four to five hours. This way you’ll have a healthy appetite when it comes to mealtime!