What are tips for healthy on-the-go snacking?

Dr. Darria Long Gillespie, MD
Emergency Medicine
Yes! I’m always on the run – and always keep a snack or two in my bag. My favorites are:
  • Nuts – roasted, unsalted ones are best, but mixed nuts are also good
  • Dried fruit – mangoes, cherries
  • A bottle of water
  • Fruit – apple, banana
  • Yogurt
  • Beef jerky – just watch how much, because they are high in salt and preservatives.
Stefanie Sacks, MS
Nutrition & Dietetics
When you need a snack on the go, avoid the packaged energy and granola bars, and make your own trail mix with whole, natural ingredients. In this video, culinary nutritionist Stefanie Sacks shares some great tips for healthy snacking on the go.
Here are 10 healthy snacks to try -- and be sure to pack a snack when you or your kids are on the go:
  • Apple or pear wedges with peanut butter
  • Low-fat mozzarella cheese stick (string cheese) with whole-wheat crackers (look for whole wheat as the first ingredient listed)
  • Whole-wheat wrap spread with hummus and topped with turkey lunch meat, lettuce and sunflower seeds or pine nuts
  • Nuts (about the amount that fits in the palm of your hand) and a piece of fresh fruit
  • Nuts and dried fruit, with a few semisweet chocolate morsels for that chocolate craving (easy to carry with you in a zip-top bag)
  • Plain or vanilla nonfat or low-fat yogurt with berries and nuts
  • Butter-free popcorn, with a sprinkling of parmesan cheese
  • Baby carrot sticks with low-fat dressing for dipping
  • Turkey roll-ups made with turkey slices spread with pesto and sprinkled with sunflower seeds and chopped lettuce and cherry tomatoes
  • Celery sticks spread with peanut butter or with low-fat cream cheese and topped with nuts or raisins
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Marisa Moore
Nutrition & Dietetics
Eating away from home can be a challenge but it's not impossible. Snacking can bridge your hunger from point A to B without getting you into calorie trouble. Try these tips for healthy on-the-go snacking.
  • If you will be out for more than 4 hours, be sure to have plans for food or bring along a snack in your car, purse or bag.
  • Stock snacks that won't spoil like nuts, granola bar or uncut fresh fruit.
  • If you find yourself in a gas station or convenience store, skip the cakes, donuts and sodas. Choose peanuts, pistachios, baked chips, hard boiled eggs, low fat milk, yogurt or cheese which all make nutritious and filling snacks. 
Our lives can keep us busy and on the go, making it hard to make healthy choices for food. All it takes is a little pre-planning so we can have the right snacks at hand when hungry strikes! Here are some tips/ideas:  take with you baggies of nuts, seeds, dried fruits and veggies. Have a cooler in the car with water (slice of lemon or orange in it -- to avoid sugary drinks), yogurt, fruit slices. rice or whole grain crackers.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Whether you are dieting to lose weight or just to want to keep fueled throughout the day, snacking should be a part of a healthy eating plan. Here are some tips for healthy on-the-go snacking.

Plan Ahead: Count on eating 2-3 healthy snacks a day and plan what they will be in advance. You'll eat less if it is organized, but be careful to not buy too much snack food each week. You are likely to barrel through it just because it's there.

Make your Own: Keep your pantry stocked with ingredients for making your own snacks. As a general rule, choose snacks high in fiber and protein with no added sugars: nuts and seeds, whole-grain crackers, peanut butter, fruit slices, hard-boiled eggs and low-fat soups. Try to keep each snack between 150 to 200 calories.

Snack Defensively: Eating snacks at pre-planned times -- mid morning, mid-afternoon and evening. This strategy might help stave off the fast-food drive-by or mindless high-calorie grab typical of a hungry snacker.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.