Thursday, June 2, 2011

Snick Snack Substitutes

Snick Snacks are awesome.  I bring them everywhere with me- in my purse, at my office desk, on planes, trains, cars... I like to know I have food with me to eat in case something happens.  I grew up snacking on processed foods, so I had a lot to change when I get up those foods and refined sugars.  Don't feel overwhelmed!  With a little preparation, you can fight off any craving.

You should use snacks in between meals to eat the nutrients your body needs every day. Be intentional and conscious of your snacking- of what you put in your body and how it adds up. 

I would say the biggest issue with snacking is what you are CRAVING. Often our bodies will exhibit cravings for sweets when what they really need is more protein. Realizing what and why you are craving is half the battle - if you're even truly hungry at all... I will post more research about our cravings next week. In the meantime, drink a cup of water before you start snacking. You may be just dehydrated, not hungry between meals.

My daily eating habits include snacking at least twice a day. At first I tried to incorporate some "healthy" processed foods, but I was shocked and disgusted once I researched the processed food ingredients:

> Tastes so good, no time to prepare.. Applesauce was my go to snack at work. Then I realized that it was loaded with high fructose corn syrup and sugar. High fructose corn syrup is a highly processed substance is more harmful to humans than regular sugar, contributing to weight gain by affecting normal appetite functions. So now I choose to eat a real apple.
Note: Yogurt tends to have a lot of sugars in it as well, so make sure you read the label!

> Jackpot! I was SO EXCITED when I found this gluten and dairy free pudding. Finally, an easy snack made just for me! ...Then I checked out the ingredients. The research I did was very scary, and I'll never touch this pudding again.

So there are A LOT of ingredients listed. Rule #1 - if you can't pronounce the ingredients, you shouldn't eat them. Some of the unrecognizable ingredients are: 
Carrageenan - processed, helps to gel the pudding, linked to cancer in humans
Soy Lecithin- extracted chemically (those words should scare you enough)
Calcium Carbonate - is the least useable form of calcium found in nature

...So now I prefer to stick with fresh fruit (with some honey/cinnamon) or other homemade snacks. First - clean out your closet and make the commitment to feed yourself right.

Snick Snack Substitutes:
- Leftovers (small portion size)
- Oatmeal
- Popcorn (no butter)
- Cereal or Granola (w/ Lowfat or Non-Dairy Milk) - Probably the only processed food I would recommend snacking on, because it's so easy and convenient. Just make sure the first ingredient is a WHOLE grain and doesn't have too much sugar. (Post coming on how to choose your cereal soon!)
- Mashed Potatoes (homemade & with non-dairy milk)
- Fresh Fruit:
      > Drizzle honey / cinnamon over if you need something sweet
      The Earth provides us with a plethora of juicy snick snack choices: Strawberries, Grapes,
      Banana, Orange, Peach, Apple, Pear, Raspberries, Watermelon, Blueberries, etc!
      > Dip in natural peanut butter or homemade hummus for extra taste. Don't eat a
      processed veggie dip - try Lacey's Raw Ranch Dressing if you're craving a dip or ranch
                                       Broccoli, Carrots, Celery, Cherry Tomatoes, Peas, etc!

*Check out our recipes page for more ideas!
Note: This post will continuously be a work in progress. There are always new recipes, ideas and fresh produce that we can create snacks with! Please add any comments and suggestions, and we will share them with our readers.


  1. Good morning friend! Reading this makes me want to have my own refrigerator that I don't share with 3 other people! Soon enough this will be true!

    Do you have any good suggestions or facts about buying some of the produce & such when the pockets aren't running very deep with dough? The Farmer's Market is great, but we're moving away from the city so I'm not sure it'll be much of an option up North.

  2. Hello,
    I would recommend buy locally and eat in season. Fruits and Veggies get expensive when they have to be flown in from other countries and shipped across the states.
    You're more likely to get fresher food if you buy locally, and then you're helping the environment.
    Check out Local Harvest to find the best food grown closest to you:
    PS - Enter in our June giveaway to win some healthy snacks!

  3. Juls- Don't worry about sharing. When Mike and I first started our challenge I literally put a huge piece of tape on one shelf in the refrigerator & wrote "Lacey's Food". It may seem rude, but discuss with the "roomies" first. Let them know that your health is important to you and that you're going to start making some changes (or incorporating more things like fruits & veggies). Don't let others deter you. Eventually, Mike saw what I was doing and saw the progress, and eventually started eating the same way as me (yes! he CHOSE to do it.) The same may happen with your roomies. They'll appreciate what you're doing for yourself, see the positive results, and want to do the same. Like Steph said, check out Local Harvest to see what local markets are near you. You'd be surprised, there may even be some of the "side of the road" produce stands you always see in the middle of nowhere. Their prices are pretty cheap as well.

    Even if you can't find a market & have to buy from the grocery store (which IS pricer), think about what things you're eating that you can get rid of to save on money. You buy that bag of $3.99 chips? Forget that and replace it with 2 bell peppers, or a bag of apples. There's always room for switching out items and replacing with better ones without spending any more money. Just replace.

    Love ya Juls! And don't let the roommates deter you! You can do it!!!!

  4. What about homemade Popsicles? Trader Joe's carries Mango nectar or pure juice with no additives. Can I make popsicles or is that too much sugar (although natural)?

    I also enjoy ricecakes with peanut butter and agave nectar drizzled. One thing I have learned (due to being cheap and wanting to be healthier) is when I buy a giant bag of a snack (ie. rice cakes) I portion them out into ziplocks so when I do sit in front of the tv I have one portion not a whole bag in front of me.

  5. Try making your own popsicle! Either make your own orange juice or buy an all natural (absolutely no additives/extra sugar) and freeze the juice in a popsicle mold. ( Or just make your favorite smoothie and freeze it in the mold. Often times this is MUCH cheaper than buying. You figure a orange juice container is HUGE (and about $3.99 or $4.99 depending on where you shop) and could probably make 5 times the amount of popsicles that comes in a $3.99 box.