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Healthy Snacking

What Kind & How Much

Published Aug. 29, 2011 @ 11:49 a.m.

Did you snack yesterday?  If you are like most Americans the answer is yes.  According to research by Dr. Barry Popkin 97% of adults snack and snacks account for about 25% of total calorie intake.
Some research suggests that snacking can help with satiety and is associated with lower body weight.  However, snacking research is inconsistent; other studies suggest limiting caloric intake to three meals a day is a better approach to weight management.
Should you decide you need a little caloric pick me up, choose wisely.  “Fruit, vegetables; low fat dairy products such as string cheese and yogurt; whole grains; and lean meat and beans such as hummus with whole grain crackers are good choices,” says Dr. Sharon Robinson, Nutrition Specialist and Registered Dietitian with the Texas AgriLife Extension Service.  The secret is to keep portion size under control to avoid eating too many calories during the day.  Consuming more calories than needed leads to unwanted weight gain especially when not offset with increased physical activity. 
To learn more about healthful snacking visit ChooseMyPlate.  Texas AgriLife Extension Service offers free and low cost education sessions on health and nutrition.  For more information contact Nancy McDonald, Garza County Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Agent at 806-495-4400.

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