By: Katelyn Onaga, FSH 451,Community Nutrition Student. Class instructed by Dr. Jinan Banna, University of Hawaii Manoa

What snacks are hiding in your desk? Do you have office parties where the food just speaks to you saying, “Eat me!” and you force yourself to resist? Snacking is a common reason for overeating, which can lead to major health problems.

However, snacking isn’t all bad, research shows that some snacks can help with appetite control, increase the time one feels full, and help control blood glucose levels. Having a small snack a few hours after a meal helps prevent hunger, which can affect work performance and mood.

When choosing a snack it should be one that is low in calories and high in protein. An example of a snack is high protein plain yogurt; one serving is 160 kcals and 14 grams of protein. Avoid pre-flavored yogurts that contain high amounts of added sugar. Plain yogurt is great on its own, but can sometimes become boring. Below are some suggestions on how to change up yogurt into some fun snacks.

Toppings
Adding fresh fruit is a way to sweeten plain yogurt, while roasted oats with honey make a nice crunchy granola.

Frozen Yogurt
Whipped yogurt is one of many yogurts that can be found in stores today. When frozen it becomes just like ice cream!

Yogurt Dip
Plain Greek yogurt seasoned with herbs, spices, and sauces make a dip perfect for carrots sticks.

Dairy-Free
Alternative options instead of yogurt are plant based protein snacks, like crunchy chickpeas or hummus.

RESOURCES

  1. Miller R, Benelam B, Stanner SA, Buttriss JL. Is snacking good or bad for health: an overview. Nutrition Bulletin. 2013; 38(3), 302-322. doi:10.1111/nbu.12042.
  2. Sonnentag S, Pundt A, & Venz L. Distal and proximal predictors of snacking at work: a daily-survey study. Journal of Applied Psychology. 2017; 102(2), 151-162. doi:10.1037/ap10000162.
  3. Ortinau LC, Hoertel HA, Douglas SM, & Leidy HJ. Effects of high-protein vs. high fat snacks on appetite control, satiety, and eating initiation in healthy women. Nutrition Journal. 2014; 13(97). doi:10.1186/1475-2891-13-97.
  4. Zizza CA. Healthy snacking recommendations: one size does not fit all. Physiology & Behavior. 2014; 134, 32-37. doi:10.1016/j.physbeh.2014.01.034.

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