Thursday, March 1, 2012

Snack Time: Moving from "Snack" Food to Real Food

I was talking with a client the other day and she mentioned that she gets very hungry in the mid-afternoon. Having a salty palate, she usually resorts to salt and vinegar potato chips but was looking for other snack alternatives to help her make it to dinner.

I recommended other salty foods such as olives, feta cheese, anchovies and sardines and suggested that she make herself a small plate of those items. She did it the next day, felt "stuffed" and is making the effort to navigate away from the chips.

Most telling was her comment, "I never thought to have those foods as snacks." With the incessant marketing from food companies about "snack" foods such as natural potato chips, low-fat cookies and high-fiber granola bars, why would she?

Unfortunately, the idea that real food in smaller portions can constitute a snack has been shelved, replaced with natural potato chips from potatoes sprayed with tons of chemicals, low-fat cookies containing tons of chemicals and high-fiber granola bars sweetened with tons of refined sugars. (Even organic snack foods have plenty of fillers and sweeteners.)

We've heard over and over that fruits, vegetables and nuts make great snacks (which they do), but don't be afraid to satiate yourself with half a sandwich, a small bowl of brown rice with chopped tomato and olive oil or a leftover piece of grass-fed skirt steak. We'll get more nutrients from these true foods and be satiated until the next meal.

Tell me, does that ever happen with a bag of low-fat soy crisps?

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