When I attend meetings and seminars, I am often faced with the usual heaping tray of doughnuts and pastries. They look scrumptious, and I am sorely tempted by my gut. But my head knows they are empty-calorie foods filled with fat and sugar. And they are lacking in nutrition. Plus, I know they may put me to sleep, instead of keeping me alert.
Do yourself a favor, and prepare your own snacks ahead of time. Pop them in a bag, and bring them along.
If you are responsible for preparing snacks for a meeting, do the attendees a favor by providing them with healthy snacks such as the following that are both nutritious and tasty.
Bring nutritious, high-protein snacks to keep yourself alert and energetic. Be careful to choose snacks that are low in saturated fat, such as:
- an assortment of low-fat cheese cubes,
- mozzarella cheese sticks and smoked salmon.
If you don’t want animal products, bring:
- low-salt mixed nuts;
- nut butters made from peanuts,
- almonds or hazelnuts; and
- hummus, a dip made from garbanzo beans.
Don’t put yourself to sleep with foods made from refined grains, such as cookies, cake, and white bread. These quickly reduce alertness and cause fatigue. Instead, bring whole-grain snacks that provide long-lasting energy. Any processed food like muffins are aging. Bring any of the following if you can make them for find them using unprocessed ingredients:
- mini whole-grain muffins,
- small whole-wheat rolls and
- whole-grain crackers or rye crisp
to accompany protein-rich snacks like:
- low-fat cheese,
- nut butters and
- smoked salmon.
Fruit and Vegetable Snacks
Best choices for dips is fresh sliced veggies and fruits. Bring fruits and vegetables including an assortment of:
- whole fruits,
- fruit salad or
- fruit kabobs
with honey-sweetened plain yogurt for dipping.
Sweets and Beverages
Bring a sweet but healthy tidbit in the form of:
- dried fruit or
- low-fat, whole-grain fig bars.
Most bottled juices are pasteurized and therefore are really sugar water because of the processing. Stay away from all diet drinks and fruit juice. Instead of these and sugary soft drinks, bring:
- hot tea
- unsweetened iced tea
- flavored seltzers
- water with lemon
Adapted from: http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/healthy-snacks-meeting-4895.html
with input from Deborah Phillips, MS, LDN: www.debphillips.biz