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Best Snacks for Weight Loss

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Losing weight means you have to exercise more or eat less, or a combination of the two. Regular snacks can stop you from feeling hungry between meals and help maintain a steady level of blood glucose -- vital for preventing cravings and dips in your energy levels or mental alertness. When it comes to weight loss, some snacks are better than others. Avoid candy, sweets and heavily processed foods, and choose snacks that will complement your quest to lose weight and benefit your overall health.

Apples

Apples are a convenient, portable snack and are very complementary to weight loss. Low in calories but high in fiber, an apple is filling, takes time to eat and contains essential vitamins. Wash your apples thoroughly before eating to remove any traces of dirt, pesticides or insecticides. Slice the apples and serve with small cubes of low-fat hard cheese for a sweet and savory snack.

Nuts

Although nuts can be calorie dense, they contain healthy omega-3 and omega-6 fats, fiber, vitamins and minerals. Nuts are a filling and healthy snack. If you choose nuts as a snack, eat them raw and unsalted in small quantities--for example, 10 almonds or five Brazil nuts. Avoid nuts if you have any form of nut allergy.

LIVESTRONG.COM: Nutritional Benefits of Nuts

Hard-Boiled Eggs

Hard-boiled eggs are a very portable weight-loss snack. Rich in protein, essential fats and vitamins, hard-boiled eggs are filling and easy to prepare. Leave the eggs inside their shells and peel when you are ready to eat them to maintain their freshness.

Low-Fat Yogurt

Rich in protein and calcium, low-fat yogurt is a filling snack ideal for dieters. Avoid processed yogurts, which contain artificial flavors and preservatives, and select natural yogurts such as strained Greek yogurt. If you prefer a more flavorsome yogurt, add small pieces of fruit, like melon, cherries or peaches.

LIVESTRONG.COM: Why Yogurt is Good for You

Raw Vegetables

Raw veggies are both healthy and very low in calories. Carrot sticks, celery, cucumber, peppers, tomatoes and greens all make for tasty, easily prepared snacks. Raw vegetables can also be combined with dips made from low-fat yogurt or hummus to make a satisfying snack. Wash your vegetables well to remove any traces of dirt and chemicals.

LIVESTRONG.COM: Veggie Dip Recipe

Watermelon

Because of its high water content, watermelon is a very low-calorie snack. Eaten chilled, it is refreshing, satisfying and tasty. To enhance the flavor of watermelon, try it with a light dusting of cinnamon. To avoid having to carry a slice of watermelon with you, scoop out the flesh in advance and store it in a plastic food tub.

References

  • "The Complete Guide to Sports Nutrition"; Anita Bean; 2009
  • "The Metabolism Advantage: An 8-Week Program to Rev Up Your Body's Fat-Burning Machine-At Any Age"; John Berardi, Ph.D., C.S.C.S; 2006
  • "The Master Your Metabolism Cookbook"; Jillian Michaels; 2010

--Patrick Dale

Best Snacks for Weight Loss. Courtesy of LIVESTRONG.COM