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Last Updated on November 27, 2020

Tasty and Healthy Weight Loss Snacks to Reach Your Goals Fast

Tasty and Healthy Weight Loss Snacks to Reach Your Goals Fast
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The decision to become healthier by way of weight loss is a struggle for many people. We have been told most of our lives that healthy food choices mean giving up the food and snacks that make us happy or we will be unable to achieve weight loss success. However, weight loss snacks can actually help you lose weight.

If the right choices are made, you can enjoy snacking and still lose weight!

This article will guide you through identifying healthy and flavorful weight loss snacks that will contribute to your weight loss goal.

How Healthy Snacking Helps You Lose Weight

If you make smart choices and choose healthy snacks for weight loss, it can be the thing that aids you in your weight loss journey.

Keep in mind that balance is everything. Too much snacking or the wrong kinds of snacks can backfire. We will get into that soon.

Not only do you not have to give up snacks, but you can eat the snacks that you actually love.

12 Best Snacks for Weight Loss

No matter your dietary preferences, snacking with mindfulness and awareness is important. This should go without saying.

However, no matter your diet, fruits and vegetables should be the number one choice! Fruits and vegetables are essential for a healthy life and body. When a little variation is needed, incorporating exciting, tasty, and healthy snacks can still be good for your weight loss goals.

Whether you’re a carnivore, vegetarian, or vegan, there’s something on this list for everyone. Let’s get into a few snacks for your weight loss goals!

1. Rice Crackers and Cheese

Rice crackers are usually made with brown rice, which is a great source of carbohydrates and filling fiber. Fiber makes you feel full for longer. Cheese has so many essentials: calcium, protein, and vitamins A and B. Paired together, rice crackers and cheese can help you get there with the combination of protein, fiber, carbs, and vitamins.

Weight loss tip:

Remember that this is a snack. Always go with the serving recommendation on the label. It is much easier to track calories and fat.

2. Boiled Chicken Breast

Chicken has enough grams of protein to aid in muscle growth, and it’s one of the cleaner and leaner meats to eat. Chicken breast also aids in the reduction of cardiovascular disease.

Snacking on boiled chicken can aid you in your weight loss journey. Topping with lemon juice, pepper, and ginger is a very impactful flavor combination but also a wonderful anti-inflammatory combination[1].

Weight loss tip:

Emphasis is placed on chicken breast because white meat chicken has less fat than dark meat chicken. Fatty meats will hurt you in trying to achieve your goal.

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3. Soup

Having soup for a snack can contribute significantly to your weight loss goal. Soup is hearty, filling, and more appealing than water to many (however, it’s important to continue to drink water!).

You sip soup slower than water, and because of that, soup is known to help you feel fuller for longer. That means less eating!

Weight loss tip:

Be mindful of sodium/salt/msg. High levels of sodium in a diet alters the metabolism, and a healthy metabolism is key for fat absorption. If you do find your soup is lacking salt, add a pinch of sea salt for a flavor boost.

4. Tuna Salad

Tuna is high in potassium and omega-3 fatty acids. Potassium is an electrolyte that helps maintain blood pressure and blood flow; it also counteracts sodium. Additionally, it is high in vitamin B and low in calories and fat.

Weight loss tip:

Be mindful of how you eat your tuna. Be cautious of the amount of mayonnaise used. The best way to snack on tuna is with a fork (so you can eat slowly and mindfully).

5. Steamed Shrimp

Shrimp has so many health benefits and can truly aid you in your weight loss goals. Shrimp is super low in calories and very protein-rich. Shrimp is really a combination of protein and water; you won’t find fatty pockets on shrimp.

As a snack, shrimp will provide many vitamins and minerals with the added benefit of feeling completely satisfied.

Weight loss tip:

Be mindful of the serving size and of the seasoning that you use. Seasonings high in sodium will alter the amazing benefits. Consider using lemon juice, ginger, and garlic.

6. Smoked Salmon

This snack comes ready for you to eat! It’s tasty and healthy, packed with antioxidants (antioxidants remove damaging oxidizing agents in a living organism). Our bodies have to function properly to aid us in our weight loss and health goals. Smoked salmon is one of the best healthy snacks for weight loss!

Weight loss tip:

Smoked salmon requires nothing to be added. It is packed full of flavor from the get go. Adding things like sodium will contradict the amazing benefits. The best way to eat smoked salmon is with a fork.

7. Greek Yogurt and Fresh Fruit

Greek yogurt is packed with protein. Eating this alone is already very healthy due to the process of making it, which includes draining out the lactose! Lactose is the sugar found in milk. Adding fruit to it adds natural sweetness without separately added sugar, and of course the benefits that come with fruit!

Weight loss tip:

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Yogurt has sugar in it, and too much sugar is damaging to your weight loss goals. Be mindful of portions and toppings. The wrong toppings will contradict the benefits.

8. Steamed Veggies with Garlic and Parmesan Cheese

Steaming your veggies takes away the need for butter and oil. Adding a little parmesan cheese and garlic gives these veggies a lot of flavor and the benefits found in dairy. Not only are you giving your body two important necessities, but you are also going to feel very satisfied for a longer period of time[2].

If you need a little flavor boost, mix in a little olive oil for an addition of good fats.

Weight loss tip:

For those that don’t eat dairy, try a drizzle of Italian dressing or topping it with guacamole. As always, be mindful of portions.

9. Hard Boiled Eggs

Eggs are a great snack for weight loss, especially if boiled without the use of butters and oils. Eggs are packed with protein, low in calories, and have essential vitamins, such as B and D. They make for a great weight loss snack because, in addition to the nutrients, you will feel full and satisfied.

Weight loss tip:

Eggs are high in cholesterol. To reduce the amount of cholesterol intake, avoid eating the yolk. Most of the benefits are in the egg white.

10. Smoothie Bowl

Smoothies are amazing. You can get your six servings of fruits and vegetables in one smoothie! A variation to the norm is a smoothie bowl[3]. Many times, we crave things like ice cream, so why not make the healthiest version?

Recipe tip:

Create your favorite blend and top with fresh fruit chunks, granola, coconut flakes, or a nut and seed mix. You can even add a dollop of almond butter!

Weight loss tip:

There is plenty of natural sugar in the fruit and toppings. Be mindful of putting in added sugar.

11. Chia Pudding

Chia seeds

are an amazing little seed. They are rich in omega’s, carbohydrates, and protein. They’re also high in fiber. Consuming chia seeds for a snack can really help you achieve weight loss success. You will consume a superfood that will leave you feeling full for hours!

Recipe tip:

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To make chia pudding, simply use a 4 to 1 ratio:1 cup of plant-based milk to 1/4 cup chia seeds; add a little agave for sweetness.

Let it sit for a couple of hours, stirring every 15-20 minutes. Make it for the day or for the week! Want to add a little flare? Blend some fresh fruit and top!

Weight loss tip:

Be mindful of the amount of sweetener/sugar used.

12. Baked Peach and Cherry Delight

Fruits and vegetables are key for every diet. This is the way to true health and healthy weight.

Peaches contain niacin, folate, iron, choline, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, zinc and copper, so they are basically vitamins! Cherries are a wonderful antioxidant; combined you have delicious vitamin that will leave you happy and satisfied.

Recipe tip:

Simply cut up a few peaches, add half a can of cherry pie filling, and add 3 tablespoons of lemon fruit filling for sweetness. Mix and bake on 350 degrees for about 30-45 minutes.

Weight loss tip:

Both peaches and cherries are naturally sweet. The lemon fruit filling is sweet as well. No additional sugars or sweeteners are necessary.

8 Tips for Healthy Snacking and Weight Loss

So how can you get started with healthy snacking while reaching your weight loss goals? Here are some tips for you:

1. Set Your Goal

Before getting started, you have to know what you want. What is the goal? How many pounds per week? How many pounds total?

If you aren’t sure how to set realistic goals, you may find helpful information in this article.

2. Set a Deadline

What date/season are you wanting to have the weight off? It’s important to set a target date so that you are focused.

3. Practice Mindfulness

Mindful eating is about eating mindfully. It is about being fully aware of what you are experiencing, your cravings, and physical cues. Eating for purpose and not boredom or pleasure is key for your goals.

The importance of mindful eating at snack time is massive. Rachel Zimmerman, an R.D. at Indiana University Hospital at IU Health states the following:

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“Just because snack foods like dark chocolate, nut butters, and avocado have earned nutritional kudos for being good sources of heart-healthy fats and other nutrients, that doesn’t mean you should eat a ton of them.”[4]

The most important step is mindfulness. The key to getting started is being mindful when making snack choices. For a guide to mindful eating, you can take a look at this helpful article: The Best Benefits of Mindful Eating for Weight Loss and How to Start Now.

Mindfulness isn’t something that is taught to us. It is something that you seek to learn and incorporate in your day-to-day living. Many of us don’t know the truth about food and the role that it plays in our lives and in our health. This creates unhealthy habits.

Food is usually used as a substance for pleasure instead of nourishment. We devour most things in front of us without being mindful and aware about what we are actually consuming[5].

A Mindful S.N.A.C.K. - Carla Naumburg, PhD

    4. Mind Your Plates

    Use smaller plates so that you’re not eating portion sizes that are too big. If you load a small plate, you are still controlling your portions but enjoying a plate full of food.

    5. Have Breakfast

    We have heard it since the beginning of time: “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” It is!

    A 2013 study showed that people trying to lose weight were more successful in reaching their goals when they incorporated breakfast in their daily routine[6]. This step alone can help you in your weight loss goals and make you want to snack less.

    6. Pack Your Snacks

    Packing your snacks and preparing for the day is key. You want to have healthy options when you start to crave food. Packing things like healthy granola bars, crackers, fruit, etc. will alleviate the bad choice of a candy bar or chips from the vending machine.

    7. Reward Yourself

    It is so important to reward yourself for a job well done. When you work hard throughout the week and see the benefits on the scale, reward yourself! Losing weight and changing eating habits is difficult. When a mission is accomplished, get out there are pat yourself on the back!

    8. Drink Enough Water

    Water is absolutely necessary for health but can also aid you in losing weight. Try drinking a cup of water before snacking. You may find that you weren’t hungry at all, just thirsty (many times, dehydration shows up as hunger).

    The Bottom Line

    Remember, fruits and vegetables should be your number one choice for snacking. Be mindful of your choices, and remember to try water first.

    Snacking for weight loss is healthy and can help you reach your weight loss goals fast. Snacking isn’t a negative; if done right, it is all positive!

    More Weight Loss Snacks

    Featured photo credit: Louise Burton via unsplash.com

    Reference

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    Veronica Castillo

    Vee Castil; Resume & Career Writer ᛫ Traveler ᛫ Vegan ᛫ Weight Loss Success (-85lbs)

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    Published on July 14, 2021

    13 Best Foods to Eat at Night (Advice From a Health Coach)

    13 Best Foods to Eat at Night (Advice From a Health Coach)
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    We’ve all had late-night cravings. Those times when you would lie in bed but your mind is on the fridge. You try to fight it, but you find out that you can’t. Food—you want food—to chew and to drink and to swallow. It usually goes this way: after much hesitation, you would get off your bed and walk over to the kitchen where you would stand for seconds and maybe even minutes contemplating a lot of things.

    You have heard about it—read about it, too—the famous “eating late at night isn’t good for you.” You know well about how eating late at night can cause you stress and make you gain weight. But you just want to eat—and eat you must.

    But what must you eat? What are your best and most healthy options? Here are the 13 best foods to eat at night.

    1. Turkey

    If you aren’t a vegetarian, then you most probably love turkey. It is not only very tasty and delicious, but it is quite nutritious, too. Turkey contains a lot of protein. As little as 28 grams of turkey already contains eight grams of protein.[1]

    It also contains some amount of vitamins and a nutritive compound called selenium. Selenium is a powerful antioxidant that plays an important role in ensuring the thyroid gland functions properly.

    Turkey passes as one of the best foods to eat at night because the protein tryptophan, which it contains in a considerable amount, is believed to promote tiredness and thus, sleepiness.[2]

    2. Fish

    Another great choice for non-vegetarians is fish, especially fatty fishes like salmon, tuna, and mackerel. These are considered healthy choices because they contain a considerable amount of Vitamin D. Vitamin D helps your body regulate its calcium levels and is good for your kidneys, parathyroid glands, skin, etc.

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    Fatty fishes also contain omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are a group of healthy fatty acids that can serve as anti-inflammatory agents and are good for the brain. Omega-3 fatty acids are shown to be able to increase the amount of serotonin produced by the nervous system, and thus, make sleep feel better.[3] This means that fishes would not keep you awake! You don’t have to roll from side to side trying to fall asleep after eating them.

    Fishes also contain nutritive oils that are good for your body and skin.

    3. White Rice

    White rice is just rice that has no bran germ—that is, both bran and germ have to be removed as a result of processing from brown rice to make it white rice. This removal of bran and germ causes white rice to contain lower fiber, nutrients, and antioxidants when compared with brown rice. However, white rice still contains a commendable amount of nutrients such as thiamine, folate, and manganese and so is great as a late-night meal.

    White rice has a high Glycemic Index. (GI). A food’s glycemic index is simply the measure of the rate at which that food increases the body’s sugar level. Taking in foods with a GI index, such as rice, can improve the quality of one’s sleep. This is as long as one takes these foods one hour before sleep. If you plan to sleep by 7 p.m, then it is a good idea to eat white rice by 6.p.m.[4]

    4. Bananas

    Finally, Something for vegetarians. A fruit! Bananas not only taste good, but they are also rich in the compounds potassium and tryptophan, making them one of the best foods to eat at night.

    Tryptophan, as earlier stated, is an essential protein that plays a role in relaxation. Some bananas before meals can improve the quality of your sleep. Plus, they contain vitamins and are rich in antioxidants. They also contain compounds that are capable of making bowel movements easier.

    5. Cheese and Crackers

    Cheese and crackers, crackers being a source of carbohydrates and cheese a source of tryptophan, can help balance the body’s sugar level. When you take cheese and crackers together, more tryptophan is made available to your brain.[5] The sugar in cheese feeds your brain, and tryptophan helps with the production of melatonin.

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    This means that there would be more serotonin and melatonin production in your nervous system when you take cheese and crackers together. Serotonin improves the quality of a person’s sleep.

    6. Warm Cereals

    Cereals are great sources of fiber. Ones like oats also contain an impressive amount of melatonin, which improves sleep.

    Before bed, a hot bowl of cereal and maybe even whole grains are a good choice. They do not contain a lot of calories and would most likely not keep you awake.

    7. Yoghurt

    Yogurt tastes good, and kids and adults love them. They are also a rich source of calcium. Calcium is an essential mineral to the body. It is necessary for the growth of bone and teeth, and skeletal, smooth, and cardiac muscles need it for muscular contractions to happen.

    Your body also needs calcium to produce melatonin from tryptophan. If calcium levels are low, there will be a reduced rate of production of melatonin—and thus, low quality sleep. Yogurt also contains casein. Casein is believed to reduce early morning hunger.

    Unsweetened yogurt is a great snack and one of the best foods to eat at night.

    8. Eggs

    Eggs are great sources of protein and don’t contain many calories. As a late-night snack, eggs are a great pick. They are easy to cook and can go along with many different kinds of snacks.

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    Eggs also contain tryptophan, which—as you must now already know—can improve the quality of one’s sleep.

    9. Protein-Pineapple Smoothie

    As you may have noticed, most of the snacks and foods on this list of best foods to eat at night are protein-rich foods. Protein-rich meals taken around bedtime can boost muscle repair. They can also combat age-related muscle mass loss especially in people who frequently exercise.

    As a late-night snack, you can blend some pineapple pieces into milk. Milk is a great source of the protein tryptophan from which the body produces melatonin. Pineapples do not contain a lot of calories and might not prove a threat to your body’s normal digestive functions. Pineapples can also boost your body’s serotonin levels.[6]

    10. Tart Cherries

    Juices made from tart cherries are great alongside other snacks, such as crackers and cheese. Tart cherries have anti-inflammatory effects. Even though in small quantities, tart cherries contain the sleep hormone melatonin. They also contain procyanidin B-2, which is believed to keep stable the essential amino acid tryptophan.[7]

    Tart Cherries have low calories, too. This means that they are not too heavy and do not pose the threat of fat deposition, and they would not keep you awake.

    11. Honey

    Honey harvested from bees is nutritious and does not contain a lot of calories. It is known to be capable of increasing the production of melatonin in one’s body.[8]

    It also contains healthy sugars, such as fructose and glucose, and can have a healthy effect on your body’s sugar level. Honey is one of the best food to eat late at night.

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    12. Popcorn

    When it isn’t swathed in sugar and milk and other fatty stuff, popcorn presents as a great late-night snack. Popcorn is a low-calorie snack and contains a rich amount of fiber.[9] High-fiber grains are believed to lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers.

    Also, popcorn contains polyphenols. Polyphenols are antioxidants believed to improve circulation and in general, health.

    13. Baked Sweet Potato Fries

    French fries are amazing. They taste so good. Do you like french fries? Then baked sweet potato fries are a great pick you might want to consider.

    As a late-night snack, you can very well bake sweet potatoes instead of frying them. They are easier to prepare when baked and do not contain so much fat. Sweet potatoes contain a good quantity of fiber and vitamins.[10]They also contain some great amounts of protein.

    Final Thoughts

    When next you have the craving for a late-night meal, you should know that not all meals are great when eaten at night. Some are about right, and others could contribute to excessive weight gain, heart diseases, digestive disorders, and other health issues.

    Have you ever woken up with swollen eye bags, felt nauseous, or had malaise after a late-night meal? Then it’s possible the meal was not a great pick.

    When choosing the best meals and snacks to eat at night, you should choose meals that contain low calories—not more than 200 calories—and have high protein content. Proteins like tryptophan enhance the quality of sleep. Some of these foods include eggs, turkey, cheese, bananas, yogurt, juices, etc.

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    Remember, eating healthy is a great way to remain healthy.

    More Healthy Snacks Options

    Featured photo credit: K15 Photos via unsplash.com

    Reference

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