It’s not always easy eat healthy snacks while working an office job. You’re constantly tempted by the goodies that your fellow workers bring into the break room and the abundance of unhealthy but easily accessible snacks in the vending machine. Unfortunately, most of these treats provide little nutrients and are likely to lead to energy crashes later in the day.
To resist the temptation, plan ahead and stock up on healthy options to curb your cravings and cut calories. The ideal snacks will help you feel full and energized throughout the day while adding essential nutrients to your diet.
A good rule of thumb? Aim for foods that are high in protein and low in carbs.
Here are a few suggestions for things you can munch on while at work to fill your belly without filling out your waistline.
At Your Desk
The easiest way to calm your hunger at work is to keep some healthy snacks at your desk. Fill a drawer with some of these easy-to-store options that don’t require refrigeration and simply reach in to choose a quick pick-me-up. Be sure to stock only healthy options so you can avoid the risk of being tempted by junk food. If there’s nothing unhealthy within reach, it will make a lot easier to stay on the right path.
Seeds and Nuts
Both seeds and nuts are great options for a low carb snack. Try sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds and cashews for a healthy handful of the good kind of fat, fiber and protein. Flax and chia seeds are also an easy way to add nutrients to other snacks, like yogurt and cottage cheese, too.
While dried fruit does contain natural sugars, it also has lots of fiber to help curb your hunger. To ensure you’re choosing the healthiest option, look for dried fruit without added sugar.
Chocolate may not be the first thing to come to mind when you consider healthy snacks but dark chocolate does have its benefits, like being full of anti-oxidants and containing serotonin. It also has magnesium, which is known to relieve stress, making it a great treat on a busy workday. When choosing dark chocolate, remember the higher percent of cacao, the better it is for you.
Choose your protein bars wisely and avoid ones with excessive amounts of sugar and ingredients that you can’t even pronounce. Instead, look for ones that are full of fruit and nuts with high levels of protein and fiber.
Avoid the microwavable popcorn and buy a package of pre-popped popcorn from the store for easy accessibility in your desk drawer. Just be sure to choose the regular popcorn instead of the kettle or caramel varieties that are full of sugar.
With nuts, dried fruit and granola, trail mixes combine some of the healthiest snacks into one convenient package. A single serving packet will make it easy for you to curb your cravings without overindulging.
As long as you stay away from flavored oatmeal packets, which have lots of added sugar, instant oatmeal can be a healthy and filling snack. Instead, choose a plain oatmeal and mix in your own flavoring, like raisins or cinnamon. Another benefit of oatmeal is that also lowers cholesterol and lessens the chance of heart disease.
While you may not want to keep fresh fruit in your desk for more than a day or two, you should consider packing your favorite fruit each day for a healthy snack. Bananas, apples and oranges are all easy to bring to work and eat while sitting at your desk. Plus, they are full of vitamins.
From the Fridge
Not all healthy items can be stored at room temperature. Add a few of these favorites to the office fridge for a change of pace. Bonus points that you’ll have to get up away from your desk and rack up some steps to get your snack too!
Hummus and Veggies
Choose your favorite veggies, like carrots and celery, and pair them with a scoop of hummus for a healthy snack. Chickpea-based hummus is full of fiber and the veggies make a great low calorie dipping option.
There’s a reason why Greek yogurt has been making headlines lately. It’s full of calcium, potassium and adds a bigger dose of protein to your diet than regular yogurt. Plus, it also contains probiotics, which are great for controlling the good bacteria in your stomach.
With a resume boasting protein, calcium and Vitamin A, cottage cheese has a lot going for it. Give the dairy snack a try for a delicious yet healthy snack. Consider topping it with some fresh fruit for a different taste.
Make the Right Decision To Eating Healthy Snacks
Eating healthy snacks at work isn’t impossible. With just a little planning, you can set yourself up for success. Stock up on a few of these suggestions and say no to break room treats to keep your workplace diet in check.