04.06.2017

Healthy Snacks Benefit Parents

When I am sitting around the computer at work or home with my kids, I tend to grab whatever is convenient: chips, cookies, candy, etc. As I have been running constantly with no loss in weight my worst nightmare came—start eating healthier.

Why does eating healthy have to be such a struggle? Really, the struggle is making healthy options more available. I have been working on this for the past three weeks and the results have been amazing.

This will take a little bit of time, but if you really want to see changes it’s worth it. Not only have I seen changes in weight, but I have more energy, my skin looks better and I feel better.

So what are these magical treats I eat? They’re nothing crazy, but I love them:

  1. Carrots, celery and cucumber – I am not a huge fan of baby carrots, but I get the simplicity behind them. You grab a handful and go. Well, I have a friend at work that always has cut up vegetables at his desk and I thought I would give that a try. It’s been amazing.

Every morning I take out four full carrots, five stalks of celery and half an English cucumber. I cut them up into sticks or slices and put them into a Tupperware. Then, as my day goes on, I have vegetables to snack on. Everyone in the office is in awe at how much I eat, but it’s been great for me and I love them.

Benefits: Carrots improve vision, promote healthier skin, cleanse the body, and so much more. Read about the benefits here.

Celery low in calories, reduces inflammation, aids digestion, reduces “bad” cholesterol and much more. Read about the benefits here.

Cucumber keeps you hydrated, flushes out toxins, aids in weight loss, soothes muscle and joint pain. They do so much more and you can read about them here.

  1. Walnuts – When I thought of adding nuts to my snacks I was nervous because of the thought you always have with them being fatty. Thankfully, they are a good fat that your body needs. Walnuts are an excellent sources of anti-inflammatory omega-3 essential fatty acids. This is great as a runner because I am always needing a natural anti-inflammatory to help with recovery.

As a parent, I feel like I am losing my mind. Eating walnuts have been associated with better memory and brain function. The antioxidants in walnuts may help counteract age-related cognitive decline and even reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s.

  1. Avocado – Here is another “fat” that has always made people nervous when trying to be healthy. For years they continue to say how the avocado is considered a superfood. As a runner I love them because of the potassium they have. When I was little my dad would eat avocados and the textured seemed awful to me. As I finally caved into eating them I quickly learned how much I love them.

I can eat them plain with nothing on them, added to my eggs or on my favorite—avocado toast.

  1. Apple/Apple Sauce – They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Well, that may not be entirely true, but they are super healthy and a great snack. For me, I love that they are extremely rich in in dietary fiber. I love that I can just grab an apple and get out the door. There is not prep that needs to be done. For me, they help with my constant need for sweets. They also are great at keeping you full because of their wealth of fiber. Maybe you don’t have an apple around, but you have apple sauce for the kids. This is good too! I love grabbing a pouch of apple sauce just like grabbing an apple. Really, you’re not taking candy from a baby, but pretty close.
  2. Water, Water and more Water – Keeping a constant flow of water going can be difficult. You always run into the problem of finding a way to keep drinking water. For me, the way that works best is to have a straw. If I have a straw, I can drink tons of water. Another great perk of drinking water (specifically cold water) is that the body will need to expend energy (calories) to heat the water to body temperature.

Is there a limit to how much water you should drink a day? Sure is. But first you should worry about getting enough. Basically, take your weight x 2/3 = ounces of water daily. Keep note, you should add 12 ounces of water to your daily total for every 30 minutes that you work out. So if you work out for 45 minutes daily, you would add 18 ounces of water to your daily intake.

These have helped me immensely.  Like I said, I have seen many changes in my weight, energy level and skin. Not only has this benefited me, but my kids too. They love these treats and snacks too. Making healthier eating decisions, not only for yourself, but your entire family makes it easier.

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