5 Healthy Alternatives To Your Favorite Snacks | Healthy Living Tip
Eating healthy is a year-round goal, but now that summer is officially over and the holidays are quickly approaching, it’s time to focus your energy on prioritizing a nutritional diet. Whether you’re doing it alone or getting the whole family involved, maintaining a healthy diet can be a lot easier than you may have been led to believe. While there really is no such thing as healthy junk food, there are still snacks that are just as exciting as your typical go-to favorites. And these are also just as easy to pick on, whether it’s when you’re running an errand or watching your favorite television show. And best of all, these snacks are just as easy on your wallet as the junk snacks.
Below are a few of our favorite guilty pleasures, and a couple healthy substitutes for each that we’re sure you will still find delicious. Take them to work, eat them in class, or just pick on them when you're bored, these snacks are perfect anywhere and at anytime!
Snack: Cereal. While some cereals do offer several health benefits and are generally not considered unhealthy for you, we are referring to sugary cereals that could rival a dessert’s nutritional content.
> Healthy Alternative: Oatmeal. Rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, there is no better substitute for cereal than a bowl of oatmeal. And best of all, you can add berries, honey, or cinnamon for extra flavor (but still healthy).
> Healthy Alternative: Toast & Jam. This classic snack from your childhood still offers great health benefits into adulthood. Just ensure that the bread is whole wheat (unless you have an allergy) and the jam is made from organic fruit preserves.
Snack: Chips. Probably the ultimate junk food, there is nothing easier to grab than a bag of chips when you’re in the mood to lounge on the couch. But unfortunately, most of these bags are packed with a ton of sodium and carbohydrates.
> Healthy Alternative: String Cheese. Simple and actually fun to eat, string cheese is another snack you probably remember from childhood. This is a great item to keep in your diet because it will help you meet your minimum calcium goal.
> Healthy Alternative: Hummus & Pita Bread. Just as fun as chips and dip, pita bread dipped in hummus is a healthy way to meet your carbohydrate minimum, while also helping with weight management and cholesterol levels.
Snack: Cookies. There is nothing better than knowing you have a bag of cookies at home for dessert. But the amazing feeling you get when you're going head-first into the bag is soon replaced by a feeling of regret once you finish the bag.
> Healthy Alternative: Dark Chocolate. Dark chocolate is often an ingredient used to make cookies, but it's probably the healthiest ingredient in the batch. Not only can it help you retain your memory and heart health, it is also deliciously sweet and satisfying to eat.
> Healthy Alternative: Granola Bar. Quite similar to a cookie, a granola bar is a fantastic substitute for cookies. You can easily find one with the same flavors to replace your favorite cookie - from lemon to chocolate.
Snack: Candy. The perfect pick-me-up at the end of the day, or when you're watching your favorite movie, candy has long held a presence in our lives, even after childhood. It seems impossible to give up on colored sugar, but the below substitutes make it easy.
> Healthy Alternative: Almonds Mixed in Cocoa Power & Cinnamon. Just as easy to pick on as candy, you can prepare this snack in one big batch and then gradually pick on it over the course of a few days. Or just eat it all. Either way, all of these ingredients are super nutritional!
> Healthy Alternative: Bananas with Almond Butter. Another great alternative (if you're not allergic to nuts), this snack is fun to eat and just as sweet as your favorite candy!
Snack: Sugar-Packed Beverages. From soda to juices from concentrate, we are addicted to beverages that provide just as much flavor as a meal. However, these beverages can sometimes pack just as much, if not more, carbohydrates and sugars than our meal.
> Healthy Alternative: Flavored Sparkling Water. Packed with the same fizz that comes from sodas, sparkling water is healthy and refreshing. You can purchase these drinks at the store with flavor added, or slice up your favorite fruits and let them naturally flavor the water.
> Healthy Alternative: 100% Freshly Squeezed Fruit Juice. Probably even tastier than juice from concentrate, this substitute packs almost all the benefits that you get from actually eating fruit. Healthy and sweet!