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Mastering your Munchies

In the middle of a busy day, a snack attack can happen to anyone. Whether you're rushing the kids to practice or preparing for a hectic day at the office, the munchies hit you out of nowhere.

Embrace a healthy snack attack
It's important to know that snacking can actually be a good thing! Yes, you heard that right. Snacking can be a great asset to any meal plan, since it's a great way to maximize your energy over an extended period of time — especially during fast-paced days. Don't ignore your munchies — it's your body's way of telling you,"I need a boost!"

"Snacking between meals is a healthy habit because it fuels the metabolism, maximizes energy, and helps you avoid overeating at lunch and dinner," says Lisa Talamini, dietitian and senior expert in scientific communications at Jenny Craig. However, choosing the wrong snack foods can easily throw you off of a balanced diet.

Challenges with snacking
Bringing a snack from home is a great start to developing healthy eating on the go habits. Fresh fruits and vegetables, hummus, trail mix, low-fat cheeses and yogurt smoothies are all great snack foods that can easily be prepared from home and brought along in the car, to school or at the office.

Even if you didn't bring a snack from home and the munchies start, you can still pick items from the vending machine that won't sabotage your diet goals. Snack foods like sports nutrition bars, pretzels, baked chips, trail mix, nuts, 100% juice or tomato juice are all common vending machine items that can tide you over to your next meal and curb your munchies healthfully.

With a little planning and moderation, snacking doesn't have to make you feel guilty afterwards. By indulging in healthy snacks, you can have energy throughout the day and still lose weight!