I’ve never been a huge snacker. Sure, I always kept some almonds in my desk at work and brought plenty of healthy snacks for long car or airplane trips, but that is about the extent of my snacking.
Now that I am pregnant I have needed more snacks. Even if I eat a well-balanced meal, I still go through times where I need a snack in the afternoon to make it to dinner. If I don’t prepare for this snack in advance, I am likely to reach for something less healthy (a problem most people are familiar with).
My definition of a healthy snack is that it has to be real or whole foods and has to be something that doesn’t give you an energy crash shortly after eating. The best way to do this is to ensure that the snack contains one of the following pairs: carbohydrate + fat, carbohydrate + protein, or protein + fat. If you only eat carbohydrates, like a piece of fruit, you will end up with a sugar crash later. If you only eat protein you will likely be hungry a short time later.
Here are some of my favorite snack suggestions. As always, you can substitute out the dairy for non-dairy options and all of the snacks are actually gluten free (although I didn’t actually plan them that way).
- Fruit and nuts. Any type of fruit or nut you prefer. I like apples or citrus and pumpkin seeds and Dominik likes his fruit with pistachios. Fruit and nut butter is also a good option. (This apple actually came from a tree at a local restaurant. They have a table set up just asking people to take some because they are ripe and going to waste.)
- Boiled egg with olive oil or mayo, egg salad, or deviled eggs. I like taking a hard boiled egg and mixing a little mustard, mayo, salt, and pepper with the yolk for a quick deviled egg.
- Trail mix. I try to find one without much sugar, but this one is leftover from the move and does have a few naturally dyed chocolate candies in it. The best deal is to mix up your favorite ingredients in a container and just scoop out what you need.
- Berries and full fat yogurt or cream. You can try greek yogurt, coconut milk yogurt, or fresh (no sugar) whipped cream. We buy these bags of frozen berries at Costco, but we often have fresh berries after going to the farmers’ market on Sundays.
- Olives are a great snack on their own (they even make little travel olive packs now), but you can also pair them with sliced deli meat. Keep an eye on the deli meat ingredients. I don’t eat it often, but during pregnancy I do microwave it until it steams.
- veggies and guacamole
- veggies and hummus
- smoked salmon roll up with lettuce, cucumber, or avocado
- deli meat roll up with lettuce, cucumber, or avocado
- hard cheese and vegetables or fruit
These are just a few options, but sometimes I think it is nice to be reminded of some simple ingredients you can have on hand (or in your desk) in case you get hungry.