Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Snack on the Right Stuff: Three Snacks That'll Save Your Health

Let’s face it; we all love snack food. Our lives are so busy that most of us will grab a bag of chips or a processed fruit bar when we need a quick snack. Some of us even turn to processed snack cakes or sugary cookies. Well, as you know, chips and processed sweets aren’t good for you; just look at all those ingredients on the back of the bag. If you can’t pronounce it, then you probably shouldn’t be eating it.

So what’s the solution to this snacking dilemma? Well here are three snacks that can satisfy your cravings and meet your nutritional needs.

Blueberries and Pecans:

Instead of falling victim to those unhealthy pitfalls when you have a craving, try blueberries and pecans instead. They are an amazing snack or dessert. It’s quick and incredibly good for you. If you’re craving something sweet, the blueberries have you covered. And if you’re craving something with a crunch, you can count on those pecans.

Nutritionally, blueberries are full of antioxidants, which fight the aging process and attack or eliminate the free radicals that make you sick. And according to The Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, “pecans are particularly good for you because they contain more antioxidants than any other nut… A handful of pecans contains vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc and fiber, as well as antioxidants.” Loads of antioxidants also fight cell damage and help with the waistline.

Personally this is my favorite snack. It’s filling and fortifying. I was fighting off a cold last week, and I have to give credit to this dynamite duo for helping me stay healthy! It's especially good sprinkled on a bit of all-natural vanilla ice cream.

Resource:
http://www.durdenpecan.com/health-benefits-of-pecans.htm


A Dollop of Ice Cream and Raspberries:

It’s so hard to stay out of the refrigerator late at night. Sometimes we’re just looking for something sweet to satisfy our cravings. Instead of eating any old ice cream or mound of cookies, try a dollop of Breyers All Natural Vanilla Ice Cream and raspberries on top.

Remember earlier when I said that if you can’t pronounce it, then you probably shouldn’t be eating it? Well Breyers All Natural solves this problem. If you’re going to have ice cream, this is the way to go. Read the label; there’re only a few ingredients, which are all natural, rather than other ice creams that are loaded with unnatural things. Dairy products are good in moderation since you get your Vitamin D and calcium. As for raspberries—yep, you’ve guess it—they are antioxidants that help burn fat with their magnesium and fiber, and they help protect against cancer.

So remember, this delightful dessert is a real waistline manager as long as you keep it in moderation. Just make sure there are more raspberries than there is ice cream! Personally, this is a dessert must-have in my house.

Resources:
http://www.canadafreepress.com/medical/nutrition032104.htm
http://www.todays-women-and-health.com/raspberries.html


Apple with Honey and Cinnamon:

We all know that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but it can keep the sugary cravings away when done right too! Peel and cut your apple into bite size bits. Then sprinkle some cinnamon on top, and then follow that with a drizzling of organic honey.

We all know that apples are good for you, but do you know for just what? Apples help with asthma, bone protection, and Alzheimer’s prevention. They are cancer-fighters and lower your cholesterol. Research shows that cinnamon is an excellent spice for you because it can reduce your bad cholesterol levels (LDL), and it helps fight Type 2 Diabetes. According to HealthDiaries.com and a study published by researchers at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Maryland, “Cinnamon reduced the proliferation of leukemia and lymphoma cancer cells.” Not to mention, it’s a wonderful source for iron, manganese, fiber, and calcium. Honey is the ultimate replacement for empty sugars and sweets. It is a panacea for so many things, and it’s even a bit of a miracle worker too. Honey cures some allergies, boosts your energy level, strengthens your immune system, soothes a sore throat, aids in fighting sleeplessness, and much more.

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