Deciding what to bring to work to snack on is a great way to take a positive step toward healthier eating. When you’re trying to do multiple things at once, feeling stressed out and craving a snack, you want to be able to reach for something that’s ready to eat and good for you, too. These healthy options are easy to pack and grab when you need a little energy boost after lunch.
Almonds are a natural source of protein and contain healthy fat, which is the “good” kind of fat your body actually needs more of. You can buy small packages of almonds that are 100 calories each, which is convenient in terms of storage and portion control. Protein fills you up, so a 100 calorie snack that won’t leave you hungry afterward is totally worth it.
Because you naturally crave sugar when you constantly use your brain, which you’re likely to do frequently while at work, it’s best to choose a high-protein snack like string cheese instead of a snack filled with empty calories, like a bag of cookies. You’ll get more nutrition out of fewer calories in this case instead of more calories without much value to them.
Mini Flavored Rice Cakes
Mini rice cakes are a little bit crunchy and come in a variety of flavors. You can choose a saltier flavor or a sweeter one, depending on what you are craving. They are also low in calories per serving, which means you can eat a handful of them without overdoing it on the empty calories or added salt or sugar.
Pretzels are low in fat and contain some carbohydrates to satisfy your hunger until it’s time for your next meal. The advantage to packing a bag of pretzels is you can satisfy your mid-afternoon craving for something salty without eating something less healthy, like Cheetos. Pretzels are also less messy and don’t crunch loudly like chips do. Quiet office eating is polite!
Apples and Peanut Butter
Eating apple slices with peanut butter is the perfect combination of healthy sugar and protein, which, combined, will give you energy to keep working through the rest of your morning or afternoon. You can purchase single-serving containers of peanut butter to pack in your bag and take a minute to slice up an apple and seal it in a sandwich bag before you head to the office.
Dried or Frozen Banana
Eating frozen pieces of banana tastes and feels suspiciously like ice cream, even though it’s completely healthy for you. Dried fruit is also easy to transport from home to office, tastes pretty good and is packed with nutrients to keep you focused and energized when your morning cup of coffee starts to wear off.
Keep a few small pieces (just a few) of dark chocolate handy when you need a snack. A little bit every day is actually good for you, and reaching for that as a snack is much better than feeding cash to a vending machine in exchange for multiple servings of chocolate in one package that’s probably been sitting in there for weeks.
Remember to take full advantage of that lunch break and get a little sweaty.