Snacks versus Weight Loss

By Grace Cherian We love to snack almost as much as we want to lose weight. But according to recent research by the United States Department of Agricu...

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By Grace Cherian

We love to snack almost as much as we want to lose weight. But according to recent research by the United States Department of Agriculture, our snacking habits are adding too many calories and too few nutrients to our diets. It doesn’t have to be this way, says Susan Bowerman, Registered Dietician, assistant director of the University of California Los Angeles Center for Human Nutrition. “When done right, snacking keeps your energy levels up and gives you more opportunities to get in all your nutritional needs.”

Five snacks that burn fat
Eating snacks with the right ratio of nutrients, with the right calories, will help keep your body energized and help you lose weight.

1. One large apple and one cup of skim milk
“Almost any fruit is going to make a great snack, but you usually want to pair it with a bit of protein to make it more satisfying,” says Bowerman. “Unlike carbohydrates, which get used up relatively quickly, protein will help sustain your energy and hunger levels for a couple of hours.” One large apple and one cup of skim milk will give you 10 grams of protein and 5 grams of fibre for just over 200 calories.

2. Cottage-cheese filled avocado
Remove the pit from one half of an avocado and fill the space with two ounces of 1% cottage cheese. For 200 calories, you’ll get 9 grams of protein and 7 grams of fibre—and no dirty dishes!

3. Canned tuna on whole wheat crackers
If you don’t want to incorporate dairy into every snack, a can of tuna packaged in water is another great source of lean protein plus healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids protect your heart. For about 200 calories, you can enjoy 3 ounces of light tuna and 6 whole-wheat crackers—complete with 3 grams of fibre and 20 grams of protein.

4. Warm Pear with Cinnamon Ricotta
Ricotta cheese is rich in protein and pears are a good source of fibre. Together with a teaspoon of cinnamon, they make a delicious snack for any time of day. Each serving contains 8 grams of protein, 5 grams of fibre and 170 calories.

5. Shrimp stack
You may not think of shellfish as a grab-and-go snack food, but you can put this tasty treat together in a flash if you keep pre-cooked shrimp on hand. With Greek yogurt and avocado, it’s a protein powerhouse with 9 grams per serving and 4 grams of fibre, for only 129 calories.

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