Cravings can be incredibly powerful. Before we know it, we are diving into the snack drawer at work, heading to the nearest vending machine or swinging by the neighborhood convenience store or fast food restaurant. And in today’s world of grab n’ go eating, there is no shortage of tempting treats.
The trick is to be prepared. First, understand what it is that the craving is telling you. Are you dehydrated and simply needing a glass of water? Is your blood sugar dropping and you need to refuel? Are you having a stressful day at work and looking for some comfort food? All are valid. The challenge lie in how you chose to respond.
As tempting as that cookie may be, it doesn’t really address your body’s underlying needs. Instead, reach for a healthy alternative that both fulfills your craving while providing your body with valuable nutrients that can’t be found in most processed snack foods.
A few suggestions:
ROASTED PUMPKIN SEEDS
A savory mid-day treat packed full of protein. Also, a crunchy addition to any salad. Rinse the seeds well after scooping them from your pumpkin. Let them dry completely. Spread the seeds evenly across a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt & pepper before putting in the oven at 250 degrees for 1 hour.
High in fiber & complex carbs, a handful of beet chips will keep you going through a long afternoon. Once you have peeled you beets, use a mandolin to slice the chips evenly (about 1/16 inch). Lay the beets evenly on a parchment lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt before putting in a 350 degree oven. Roast them for 30 minutes or so, checking often to be sure that they don’t burn.
OLD-FASHIONED “ANTS ON A LOG”
Who knew that a childhood favorite would one day become our go-to healthy snack alternative. Quick, easy and full of healthy fats (yes, your body needs fats to survive). Spread fresh almond butter inside each celery stalk and then sprinkle with dried blueberries.
RICE CAKES WITH GOAT CHEESE & HONEY
A perfect combination of savory & sweet while full of fiber and protein to fuel you up. Spread the goat cheese on the rice cake. Top each with a drizzle of honey. Maybe add some chopped walnuts or almonds for a little extra crunch.