Healthy Summer Snacking     Radio July 5, 2017

I help people to “Live Younger Longer”.  Good health comes from series of choices we make daily.  It is little things that add-up over the years.  So think about what you ingest! 

With Summer in full swing, we are all enjoying this great weather, even in the rain.  From trips to the lake or beach, days at the pool or sports fields with baseball and football practice. The list goes on and on!

As we are all running about, snacking becomes important.  It is also easy to grab junk food from a fast food place, a bag of chips or such from a vending machine or a frozen treat from the Ice Cream Trucks in the neighborhood. 

Today we are going to talk about healthy ways to snack while traveling or at home.

Healthy snacks can make a big difference in how we feel, our weight and our biomarkers such as blood pressure. 

Water and hunger pangs:

Did you know that often when we think we are hungry, we are really thirsty?  Chronic dehydration plagues about 75 percent of Americans, according to the University of Tennessee, and 37 percent of the population has such a weakened thirst response that symptoms of dehydration are routinely mistaken for hunger.  So drink water!! Pure cool water.

What can we do to assure we have good, healthy snacks?

When you plan your week, make note of the times when snacking will be away from home. Those are the times when less healthy options are more often chosen. Plan ahead

  • Don’t sabotage your good health with poor planning.
  • Think ahead.
  • Look at your calendar and mark those days when you will be at the ball park for a lengthy time or at the pool or traveling. And don’t forget work days with the stress of trying to eat while on a time crunch!
  • Make a list of foods you need to purchase to make those snack times delicious and healthy as well
  • Then shop accordingly, following that list. And DON’T Shop Hungry! 

 Where to find those healthy snacks?

A great place to start is fresh fruits and vegetables from a local farm.  So many towns are sponsoring Farmer’s Markets on a weekly basis.  http://fma.alabama.gov

  • Alabaster Farmers Market Saturdays, 8Am-12Pm, June 10-August 5   1953 Municipal Way, Behind Senior Community Center     Alabaster, AL 35007
  • Burnette Farms Market in Pelham   open daily   8340 Helena Rd  Pelham, AL 35124
  • Helena Market Days Saturdays, 8Am-12Pm, June 3 - August 26  4151 Helena Road   Helena, AL 35080
  • Calera Farmers Market Saturdays, 9Am-12Pm, June 3-August 26  9758 Al-25 (Oliver Park Behind The Calera Library)  Calera, AL 35040

Others are located in Montevallo on Mondays

Chelsea on Thursday afternoons

  • Visit alabama.gov to find more listings that fit your schedule

Also many of our grocery stores are now partnering with locals farmers to supply Alabama produce in their stores!  So look there for local produce.

Now what are some good healthy snacks?

Those fresh fruits and vegetables that you found at the local farmer’s market and in our grocery stores are the best start to your healthy snacking.

Greens with their dark nutrient rich leaves are good additions to small salads and as wraps around cheeses and lean meats. Big bowls of greens with crunchy vegetables and dressing make for a filling mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack.  Nutrient rich, lots of fiber and filling!

Vegetables such as zucchini and carrots are good sliced then dipped into your favorite full fat dressing. Yes, full fat as your body needs good fats.  Grocery stores are now offering pre-cut/sliced vegetables and fruits if you don’t have time to chop.  Take advantage of these especially when you are traveling.   

Fresh fruits, chopped into bite sized pieces and carried with peanut butter or other nut butters are a great hunger buster. 

Some of my favorites on a hot summer’s afternoon is Frozen Grapes.  Take your favorite grapes, wash in Shaklee’s Basic H2 to clean off all the dirt and potential pesticides.  Place in a strainer to dry.  When dry, put on a baking sheet, then pop into the freezer for a few hours. 

When frozen, put in individual reusable containers such as Tupperware or Lock n’ Locks. Be nice to the environment!  And place those back in the freezer.  This works with watermelon as well as peaches and strawberries. 

Now if you freeze bananas, eat them immediately as they don’t do well when thawed

Purchase a good cooler, big enough to hold you snacks, water and Performance mix so you stay hydrated.  When you head out for the day, grab a few containers of your grapes, watermelon etc, put in a cooler with your Performance and water for a healthy day!  Hydration, Electrolytes, Vitamins and anti-oxidants

Yogurt or cream cheese also are good options with the fresh fruit.  Be aware of nut and dairy sensitivities. 

 

What about something crunchy and slightly salty?  I recommend servings of Nuts for protein. 

Back away from the chips.  As yummy as they are, they don’t really have a lot of good nutrition and are often filled with the wrong kind of fats. 

Nuts are a good source of protein, vitamins, healthy fats and antioxidants.  Small handfuls, golf ball size, of Almonds, Cashews, Pistachios & walnuts are good choices. Stay away from salted or sugared nuts!  These are rich in omega-3’s with lots of good fiber to keep you feeling full and a good source of protein. 

Walnuts and Peanuts are good for your heart and brain with good healthy omega-3’s. Peanuts, a legume really, are high in folate which is good for your brain.

http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20585485,00.html#best-nuts-for-your-heart-0

Some folks like to bake Kale, Sweet Potatoes and to other vegetables for a crunchy vegetable snack.  Cut thin, bake and eat.  You can add cheeses or use a full fat dressing or cream cheese.  But remember moderation!

All these can be packed in re-usable containers and stored for a use later on in the week.  Prepping ahead of time makes the difference in a good snack or junk.

Frozen Treats

Ice cream is one of my favorite treats.  However, it does not love me back!  And it is high in sugar and lactose.  Sigh….

Commercial popsicles are sugary and often filled with artificial dyes and flavors.  Neither are good for us. 

So I make my own frozen treats. You remember me mentioning the Shaklee Performance last Wednesday?  Shaklee’s hydration drink mix?  I will make up a big glass of the Lemon-Lime or the Orange Performance and free in Ice Cube Trays.

Once frozen, I put the Frozen Performance Cubes in a reusable container and back into the freezer.  When I am ready for a frozen treat, I take the Performance Cubes and toss several into the blender with some Get Clean Water and a stick of Shaklee Energizing Tea. Then I mix up a very thick frosty beverage.  Yummy.

You can also purchase popsicle makers and make your own with your favorite mixtures of healthy beverages. 

Avoid sugary drinks, artificial sweeteners, artificial flavors and artificial dyes or colors.

And, if lactose is not an issue with you and your family, you can make frozen yogurt pops.  Layer yogurt with nuts, fresh fruit such as berries, apple slices, peach slices or granola for a tasty, healthy frozen treat.  Avoid the overly sweetened yogurts with all the added fruits.  These work well in small paper cups with plastic spoons as handles.

Watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydews also freeze well. You can make them into a frozen pop or freeze the cut fruit on a tray for munching later! 

Bananas, oranges and Pineapples blended together make a wonderful frozen treat. 

https://www.gimmesomeoven.com/pineapple-orange-banana-popsicles/

Use your imagination!  Whatever flavors you like, use in a frozen treat. 

http://www.womansday.com/food-recipes/food-drinks/g1597/popsicle-recipes/?slide=13

I know when I fly across country, I make certain I have snacks with me on the plane.  Of course I am partial to my Shaklee Snack Bars and Meal Bars.  Good protein, low glycemic with lots of fiber that tastes so very good!  And taste is important.

 

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.