Nutritionist Approved Back to School Snacks

By September 9, 2015Nutrition

Did you know that the food you eat has a direct effect on your brainpower? With school back in session, now would be a great time to overhaul your snack routine to keep your body safe from crashing when you’ll need your energy most! Not in school; the same goes for you! These tips below will keep your mind focused, your brain boosted and your energy high as you go through your work or play.

Before we get to the good stuff, let’s quickly talk about dangerous food choices. In a nutshell, these are going to be foods that dehydrate you, fill you with weird chemicals or send your body on a sugar rush setting you up for a big crash.

Topping this list are energy drinks. Caffeinated drinks like Monster, Redbull and Rockstar Energy are not good for your body even though you think they may help you pull those all-nighters or get through your dreaded workout. The extreme amount of caffeine is a diuretic that pulls water out of the body. And with the water, also comes vitamins and minerals which can put the body in a state of numerous deficiencies. Besides dehydration, which can cause the body to be overly acidic, sluggish and cause brain fog, the amount of caffeine in these energy drinks can also lead to jitteriness, anxiety, high blood pressure and even seizures.

Healthier alternatives to drinking energy drinks include green tea, black tea, 1-2 cups of coffee maximum per day as well as keeping your energy regulated by eating a balanced diet. When I’m really in the mood for something cold and refreshing I’ll grab a grapefruit flavored La Croix sparkling water or this new WTRMLN  WTR which is basically the new coconut water. This watermelon water has the same amount of electrolytes as coconut water and is insanely delicious. Drink after a sweaty workout or for a sweet healthy treat!

Instead of snacking on candy, chips, cookies and other high sugar processed foods, try mix and matching the foods on the list below. They are all nutrient dense foods, which means that they contain vitamins, minerals, and fiber to keep your blood sugar balanced. When your blood sugar is balanced, your energy levels remain boosted and prevent you from crashing and burning.

Stock up on the following foods for your study time or work time snack breaks!

Safe snacks to increase your energy and keep you focused:

Sweet:

Apples
Bananas
Berries
Dark chocolate (55% or more)
Peaches

Salty:
Corn tortilla chips
Lentil chips
Quinoa chips
Seasnax seaweed chips

Protein rich:
Almonds
Almond butter
Eggs
Greek yogurt
Hummus
Peanut butter
Protein bars *

Blood sugar balancing combos:
Greek yogurt and berries
Tortilla chips and guacamole
Apples and almond butter
Bananas and peanut butter
Quinoa chips and hummus

*My favorite protein bar brands include: Larabar, Vega, Caveman, Rise, Clifbar Kit’s Organics and KIND.

And here’s a link to a previous post on how to choose a healthy nutrition bar...

 

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