What’s the ideal way to snack?

Toby Smithson
Nutrition & Dietetics

Timing of snacks is important as you want to consume snacks to help fill long gaps of time when you aren’t able to consume your next meal but not take place of a healthy meal or take away from being too full from a snack that you can’t eat your meal. Think of a snack as a mini meal and snack only when needed. Snacks should be rich in nutrients such as vegetables; whole grains like reduced fat popped popcorn or whole grain crackers; Nuts and seeds (but watch your serving size since there is a high fat content in nuts and seeds and calories add up quickly); or low fat/fat free dairy like fat reduced cheese sticks or low fat Greek yogurt.

Ms. Ashley Koff, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics
The key to healthy snacking is to balance your nutrients so that your blood sugar levels stay steady all day. Find out how by watching my video.
Marisa Moore
Nutrition & Dietetics
The ideal way to snack is only when you need it -- not simply out of habit. Enjoying a snack is a great way to fuel a workout or help you get from lunch to dinner without stopping for fast food or hitting the vending machine.
  • Plan ahead. Pack snacks for those days when you will be away from food for more than 4 hours.
  • Use snack time as a way to bridge the nutrient gaps in your day. It's a great time to fit in fruit, cheese, nuts and other nutrient rich options.
  • Aim for 150-200 calories per snack.
  • For the most filling and energizing snacks, choose those that combine protein and carbohydrate.
You should think of snacks as “small bridges” between meals. Snacks should weigh in at about 100-150 calories. If you are eating three well-balanced meals daily, then one or two snacks will help you to avoid an energy slump.

Continue Learning about Eating Habits and Nutrition

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.