Skip to main content
Go to homepage

Print Page

Smart Snacking

Teens are busy, and often skip meals. Even if you eat three meals a day, you may still feel hungry between meals. Either way, it can be tempting to grab something fast, like cookies, chips, and candy. Instead, get a nutrition boost with healthy snacks. Choose fruits, veggies, whole grains, dairy, and protein foods to get the most out of your snacks. 

Eating a healthy snack can help you stay focused, give you energy, and keep hunger in check.

Smart Snacking Strategies

When you want a snack, choose fruits and vegetables, whole grains that have 3 grams of fiber or more, and protein-rich foods, such as peanut butter or low-fat yogurt or cheese. Avoid snacks that are high in sugar, salt, and fat. 

Here are some ways to make healthy snacking part of your everyday routine:

  • Keep healthy snacks in your refrigerator or pantry. This will make it easier to make the healthy choice when it comes to snacking. 
  • Make sweets, chips, and other treats the exception rather than the rule. An occasional treat is fine, but choose healthy snacks most of the time.
  • Have a schedule for meals and snacks. When you graze throughout the day you may not notice when you are hungry or full and eat extra calories. When you skip meals, you are more likely to make poor food choices and overeat when you do eat. 
  • Practice mindful eating. Eat all snacks and meals at the table. Don't watch TV, play video games, or be on your phone when you are eating
  • Read the nutrition facts label when buying packaged snacks. Look for snacks that are low in added sugar and high in nutrients, like fiber, protein, and calcium. Check the serving size, especially when eating typical snack foods, like chips. What looks like a small package may be 2 or more servings — which means double or even triple the amounts of fat, calories, and sugar shown on the label
  • Bring healthy snacks with you. Make it a habit to stash some fruit, nuts, whole-grain crackers, or baby carrots in your backpack or workout bag so you have a healthy snack when you need it.

What Are Some Healthy Snacks?

Here are a few healthy snacking ideas:

  • Smoothies: Blend fresh or frozen fruit or veggies, like kale or spinach, with yogurt, milk, or a dairy-free milk option. Add a tablespoon of peanut butter or almond butter for extra protein.
  • Whole-grain pita, veggies, and hummus: Toast a pita, then cut it into triangles. Serve with cut-up veggies and your favorite hummus.
  • Homemade trail mix: Combine 1 cup whole-grain toasted oat cereal with ¼ cup chopped walnuts and ¼ cup dried cranberries for a healthy trail mix.
  • Air-popped or lite popcorn: Spice up your popcorn by sprinkling it with parmesan cheese or other seasonings, like chili powder or lemon pepper.
  • Banana “ice cream”: Peel several ripe bananas, break them into 1-inch pieces, and freeze them in a sealed plastic bag. Just before serving, whirl the pieces in the blender with a small amount of water or milk. Add berries for a different flavor or top with fruit or nuts.

Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date Reviewed: 01-01-2021

What next?

Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
There are 10 nurses in the picture.

And we have many more pediatric primary care providers in Northeast Ohio. You can meet some of them here.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The five differences are:
– Phone color
– Coat pocket
– Stethoscope earpiece color
– Stethoscope bell dot
– Clipboard paper color

Need help finding a doctor, choosing a location or getting a general question about Akron Children's answered? Call us or fill out the form and we'll help in any way we can.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The two matching doctors are 9 and 14.

With virtual visits, you can see our pediatric experts from the comfort of home or wherever you are.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The correct path:
The Correct Path
We offer many ways to get pediatric care all over Northeast Ohio. Use this page to find the right kind of care and the most convenient location for you.