Few years ago my son’s school organized the Crunch and Move challenge. Kids had to eat healthy food, have healthy snacking habits and be active during a month for a chance to win a nice trip to a major theme park. To help achieve the challenge, the school provided the parents and kids with a toolkit that gave healthy snacking tips as well as guidance to be more active.
In this toolkit they included a form where the contestant recorded his or her meals on a daily basis as well as the physical activity they did. They gave bonuses when the family took part in this challenge. My son was excited. He wanted to win this challenge! I wanted to win healthy snacking habits.
To encourage our son we took the challenge as a family and we kind of loved it! It was fun and rewarding. For one month we tried to eat as healthy as we could. When the challenge started, I noticed that that we did not have healthy snacking habits ! We ate lots of processed food and few fruits and vegetables. So little by little, we changed our eating habits.Few weeks after the challenge started I noticed that every member of the family lost few pounds and was feeling good.
The challenge went well, my son did not win but we won the following healthy snacking habits:
–Have fruits and vegetables available at home: Each week when I go to the grocery store, I make sure to buy at least one fruit and one vegetable for each person for the entire week. I encourage the kids to go shopping with me so they can choose their favourite fruits and vegetables. Each Sunday night, I chop some vegetables (cucumbers, baby carrots) and put them in the fridge so I find them ready for the lunch bags. When my son comes back from school, I hand him these vegetables with some cheese and pretzels. Dried fruits are good snacks too! They can be great healthy snacks for the lunch box
–Drink a lot: (I am not suggesting alcohol) : water, milk, homemade smoothies are great options. I used to buy fruit favourite juice drinks for the lunch. They can be handy but they contain added sugar!
–Buy less processed foods: I used to buy lots of cookies, frozen waffles! These processed snacks are full of fat and sugar. Instead, I made homemade cookies and waffles with the kid’s help. They taste better, are healthier and can be great family activity.
–Don’t overdo: When the challenge started, I was so obsessed with eating healthy that I cut on all the sweet things I loved. It did not work well because I had some cravings for sugar and chocolate! So I ended eating more unhealthy food than I used to. If you have a craving, go for it and don’t feel guilty! You don’t have to cut back on all your favorite food to develop healthy snacking habits. It’s all about balance and moderation
Now that you know my top healthy snacking tips, I am going to share with you my favourite snack recipe: Pretzel mix! This recipe is easy to make, healthy. It can be a great snack the lunch bag, great appetizers for your parties!
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg white
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans
- 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
- 4 cup of Snyder’s of Hanover mini Pretzels. You can use the Homestyle ones too. I like using the mini ones because they can be stored in small containers for the lunch bag.
- Preheat oven to 275
- Whisk egg white in a large bowl. Add the pecans and walnuts.
- Add in the cranberries
- Put in the miniature pretzels. Be careful so not crush them. Sprinkle with brown sugar.
- Put on a baking sheet.
- Bake for 30 minutes, stirring each 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and stir again to distribute nuts and berries. Let it cool completely in a single layer on another baking sheet.
Enjoy! and You? What are your healthy snacking tips?
I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Snyder’s of Hanover blogging program. For more information on how you can participate, click here