5 Healthy Grab-and-Go Snacks

5-Tips-for-Heart-Healthy-Snacking-700x395Grapes with almonds

Grapes are a sweet treat and natural source of antioxidants and other polyphenols, while the nuts provide protein and heart-healthy fats. Toss them into small snack containers for an easy grab-and-go snack during the week. You can’t go wrong with munching on grapes. Freeze them in pre-portioned sandwich bags, so they stay cool while you’re on the go. Almonds or other nuts found in zip-sealed bags are ideal for keeping in your purse or car.

Mandarin oranges

Mandarin oranges (like clementines and tangerines) are the ultimate grab-and-go snack. They are in their own tidy package and can go days unrefrigerated. Mandarin oranges are also high in water, packed with vitamin C to keep the immune system in tip-top shape, and two small tangerines provide more than 10% of the daily fiber recommendation for women. Clementines make great snacks — durable packaging and long shelf-life.

Vegetable dippers with hummus (or prepared guacamole)

Sliced cucumbers, jicama sticks and raw broccoli are all delicious dipped into hummus or guacamole. The crunchy vegetables are a welcome contrast to creamy hummus or hearty guacamole. This is a healthy fat and fiber combination that’s sure to satisfy. With all of the hummus flavors on the market, you can surely find one to suit your tastebuds. Hummus often comes in individual portions, too!

Cocoa-dusted walnuts

Walnuts provide many nutrients that help support a healthy heart, and high-quality cocoa powder has been shown to help lower blood pressure levels. Nuts are a source of magnesium, which may help with irritability too, so lots of wins with this one! The satisfying crunch and the sweet flavor may also crush a craving for something more indulgent.

Nuts or seeds in the shell

If quantity or portion control is an issue, try nuts or seeds in the shell. Shelling will help slow down the eating process, so you might end up eating a bit less. Heart-healthy walnuts are great, too. Try picking up extra healthy snacks during each grocery visit and storing them within reach for kids.

As with anything, balance is key, that means allowing ourselves grace to enjoy a goody from time to time without the guilt. Let go of the guilt, and enjoy your favorite treats, but be mindful about it. For example, savor every bite of your grandmother’s prized pie that she only makes at the holidays, but skip the questionable brownies in the work break room.