TOP 10 HEALTHY SNACKS - A PERFECT GIFT FOR THE NUTRITIONIST OR FOODIE IN YOUR LIFE!
The year’s best healthy snacks curated by me, holistic nutritionist, Laura De Sanctis. *In-house nutritionist with Mindful Snacks and Founder of Go With Your Gut.
If you're anything like me, you're constantly thinking about food. . . especially when it comes to snacks. As a holistic nutritionist, I get asked all the time what are the best foods to snack on anywhere...but especially at the office and even when you’re on the go. To help answer your questions, I connected with some of my favourite snack companies. Below are my top picks for the BEST healthy snacks of 2018...and snacks which I recommend are the per-fect holiday gift for the nutritionist or foodie in your life.
Since you're probably not going to try every new snack you see in the grocery store or online this year, I did it for you. In 2018, you'll see more plant-powered foods and snacks than ever before. Plant-powered is here to stay. For health, environmental, ethical and sustainable reasons, more and more companies including Google, and even the general public are turning towards a more plant-based, vegetarian or vegan lifestyle. I’ve also selected these snacks as ways to help sneak extra nutrients into anything you eat, whether at home or at work, on the go, and of course, to help you stay on your healthy A-game.
By reading this list you’ll know what to skip and what to pick up. Consider this your comprehensive list of all things worthy, from dried fruits that pack a more than a nutritional punch, to kale chips that are healthier than chips, and date balls that taste like Ferrero Roche. I’m in heaven! There’s even fruit and veggie strips, healthy organic energy bites with only a handful of ingredients, and organic popcorn with just 35 calories per cup...the incentive to be healthier...period...just got that much easier! PLUS the nutritionist or foodie in your life who loves healthy foods will thank you for finally selecting snacks with healthy nutrient profiles and anti-inflammatory powers (wahoo)! With 2018 around the corner, and going back to work too...isn’t it time you skip the high calorie sub-par snacks or muffins at your favourite coffee shop or at your work cafe, and grab one of these nutritionist approved snacks instead?!
Check out some of my fav's, below:
Nomz Energy Bites
I’m all about Nomz Energy Bites. With only 90 calories per single serving, these energy bites are mostly vegan and gluten-free. Made with only seven ingredients: almonds, dates, pecans, hazelnuts,cocoa, coconut oil and sea salt…. Nomz is one of the perfect energy bites to snack on, especially when you’ve hit that 3 pm wall, and you feel like you just can’t pull through and stare at your screen for another two hours. Don’t worry...I got you! That’s why I created this handy-dandy list!
Why I love Nomz so much, is because they focus on whole ingredients: nuts (healthy fats and natural protein), dates (fibre and natural sweetness), cocoa (anti-oxidants), coconut oil, and sea salt. They also taste like Ferrero Roche...but are packed with flavour and all the healthy nutrients you need. Undeniably, these are one of the best and most tasty energy bites of the year! Is your mouth watering yet? I know mine is! Plus Nomz are perfecto for those following a Paleo diet.
To learn more about Nomz visit: nomz.ca or check them out on Instagram at: @nomzorganic
That’s right...you heard me..fruit and veggies together in one. Now this is not like your standard fruit roll-up you ate at school as a child. This here is the real deal. One, Fruit and Veggie Go’s strip is 1 serving of fruit and veggies. What I love about this product, is that the founders Lisa and John have a thing for real food...like me...and after working on organic farms, they incorporated their love for fruits and veggies as a delightful snack.
These are gluten-free, certified organic and made with apple puree, beet puree, flax seeds, cinnamon and lemon juice. Just 1 strip is just 15 calories. PLUS what I love about this product is that in 1 serving you only have 5 grams of carbohydrates...so eating this won’t spike your blood sugar like a fruit roll-up would. Each strip contains about one-half cup of fruits and veggies. To learn more about Veggie Go’s visit: veggiegos.com
From the founders of PUR gum (aspartame-free gum and mints) PUR popcorn rocks my socks off! With just 35 calories per cup ( in a 20 gram bag) in their Sea Salt flavour, this tasty popcorn beats movie theatre popcorn anytime. Driven by taste and inspired by wellness, this popcorn only has three (3) ingredients: popcorn, sunflower oil and sea salt and made with 40% less oil than it’s competitors. What I love about this snack is that it’s vegan, made with 100% whole grain, and certified nut-free so it’s safe for the kiddies to take to school too. Plus PUR popcorn is made with no preservatives, no MSG and no GMOs. It’s a healthier popcorn to eat anytime, anywhere and even when you’re watching a movie. The salt flavour is just salty enough...that you don’t need to add any extra flavours and it doesn’t have any grease, like movie theatre popcorn does. All 3 flavours (Sea Salt, Sweet and Salty and Caramel & Sea Salt aka Toronto Mix) are all-natural, non-GMO, 100% whole grain corn, low calorie, gluten free, nut free, kosher, and made locally here in Canada with PUR love.
Caution, eating these in close proximity to your co-workers may want them craving a handful. To learn more about PUR popcorn visit: thepurcompany.com or on Instagram at: @thepurcompany
Banana chips just got up-graded! As Rihanna says: Where have you been? All my life, all my lllifffee. I was never a fan of banana crisps until I tasted nud fud. These banana crisps seriously are an upgrade from the boring grocery store dispenser banana chips. Organic, vegan, grain-free and gluten-free, these raw snacks are perfect to munch on alone, on oatmeal, coconut yogurt, smoothies, salad or even...dipped in nut butter. My favorite is the spirulina banana chips. With only 133 calories per serving, 15 grams of carbohydrates, and 8 grams of fat, these tasty treats are the perfect on-the-go snack. I also love how nud fud banana chips are packed with Vitamin A, 50% Vitamin A to be precise, Vitamin C, Calcium and Iron. Nud fud is also tree-free, nut-free (so it’s safe for the kiddies to bring to school too), sugar-free (hip hip hooray!) and non-GMO.
To learn more about nud fud (pronounced nude) visit: nudfud.com or on Instagram at: @nudfud
Patience Fruit and Co. are made of dried cranberries combined with dried tart cherries, dried blueberries, sugar and/or apple juice as well as sunflower oil. Containing 90 calories per serving, and with 0 grams of saturated or trans fat, they are perfect for eating alone or topping with some Greek or coconut yogurt. I even love adding them to my salads. Made in a peanut-free facility, organic and non-GMO these classic blends of dried fruit beat the classic, sugar-laden fruit Gushers, anytime! For more information on Patience Fruit & Co visit: patiencefruitco.com
Want to be the new office hero for 2018? Bring in some Kewaza healthy bites. Yes, you read that correctly. Long gone are the days of bringing in donuts for your team at the office. Kewaza healthy bites are organic, vegetarian, non-GMO, only 90 calories and 11 grams of carbohydrates per serving. If you’re a peanut butter lover, like me, you must try the Peanut Butter Cookie Dough flavour. With four (4) flavours: Banana Chocolate Chip, Cookie Dough, Dark Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cookie Dough, Kewaza healthy bites are made with plant-based proteins including raw organic pea protein, cranberry protein and raw organic hemp seed protein. What I love about Kewaza balls(aside from the peanut butter goodness) is that a portion of sales for Kewaza energy balls also goes to Woman Empowering women (WEW). To learn more about Kewaza visit: www.koanaturalfoods.com
Watch out all other brands of kale chips! These are next level kale chips! I can’t tell you enough how much I love Healthy Crunch kale chips. I eat them when I’m craving something crunchy and find they are a great healthy substitute to chips. Healthy Crunch kale chips are organic, gluten-free, peanut-free and nut-free….so they are safe to munch on anywhere….well maybe except in the boardroom for your Monday morning one-on-one weekly meeting with your boss.
A small snack size of Healthy Crunch kale chips made of 35 grams, has 180 calories, are certified vegan, and eco-certified. Healthy Crunch kale chips are also packed with Vitamin A and Vitamin C. In one 35 gram package, there is up to 70% Vitamin C, 40% Vitamin A and 15% Iron. That sure beats regular chips any day!
To learn more about Healthy Crunch visit: www.healthycrunch.com or on Instagram at: @healthycrunch
Now these aren’t your standard crackers that you put in soup, these are crackers with an upgrade! Enerjive crackers are gluten-free, made with low sodium and include 5 grams of protein....plus they also taste great! They're also vegan, peanut-free, dairy-free, gluten-free and non-GMO, so they are safe to take at work, at school, serve to family and friends with some vegan cheese...really, they're great to eat anywhere! Enerjive crackers are made with pea protein, brown flax seeds buckwheat and millet flour as well as sunflower seeds. Nine crackers or a 27 gram serving size is 120 calories.
To learn more about Enerjive visit: www.enerjive.com or on Instagram at: @enerjiveinc
These crunchy roasted chickpeas by Three Farmers are delicious as a snack or even salad topper. With 10% iron, 7 grams of protein and 7 grams of fibre per serving (a 40 gram serving) and a variety of taste profiles, including Balsamic and Cracked Pepper, Sea Salt and Lime, and Sriracha Slap Pea Pops, these chickpeas really kick it up a notch. Three Farmers Pea Pops are big on flavour and big on crunch. I love them for snacking at my desk, or adding them to a salad as a topper, instead of croutons. Nut-free, gluten-free and non-GMO, Three Farmers Pea Pops are an office hit.
*Nutritionist tip: Chickpeas are packed with protein and fibre. Chickpeas are a tasty to-go snack that are rich in both soluble and insoluble dietary fibre. They are a good source of protein and they don’t have the high calories or saturated fats found in comparable protein sources. Packed with a powerful nutritional punch, Three Farmers Chickpeas include iron, phosphorus, copper and zinc. They incorporate the heart healthy Omega-3 Polyunsaturates thanks to the usage of Camelina oil to bind the seasoning to the chickpeas. As well they are rich in Thiamine and Manganese.
In terms of Food Trends, Whole Foods predicts that 2018 will be the year Middle Eastern flare will fully hit the mainstream. Consumers will look beyond the hummus, pita and falafel, snacks like chickpeas will gain in popularity.
How about some gluten-free granola goodness?! This list couldn’t be complete without adding a healthy snack bar to the mix. MadeGood Foods carries healthy gluten-free granola bars that are packed with taste and nutrition. These MadeGood granola bars are per-fect for the day when you’ve skipped your morning breakfast or for that mid-day pick-me-up.
These granola products are organic, school safe and contain the nutrients in one (1) serving of vegetables from six (6) vegetable sources. So what exactly does that mean? Yup, you get one full serving of veggies worth of nutrition, without the taste of veggies, with this little guy. Just think, the taste of chocolate but with the nutrients of broccoli! How fabulous! Each MadeGood serving (one bar or one square in a 24 g pillow pack) contains nutrients of one full serving of vegetables from six different sources: Beets, Spinach, Broccoli, Shiitake Mushrooms, Carrots, and Tomatoes without the veggies taste.
MadeGood Foods minis and bars are made in a facility that is free from the top eight (8) allergens: peanut, tree nut, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, sesame and fish. One serving size for a granola bar (24 grams, single serving size) ranges from 80 - 90 calories depending on flavour profile. All products are certified organic, certified gluten-free and Non-GMO verified.For more information on MadeGood Foods visit: www.madegoodfoods.com OR check them out on Instagram: @madegoodfoods
*MadeGood is a family owned and operated business based in Toronto.
Here’s to no more excuses for eating healthy!
Are there any more healthy snacks that are perfect for the nutritionist or foodie in your life? Also, I'd love to know if there are any healthy snacks that deserve a spot at your office desk this year? If so, leave your suggestions in the comments below.