Why should I snack between meals?

Smart snacking can keep energy levels consistent without adding on extra pounds.

Many people avoid snacks because they are afraid that snacks will make them gain weight. Healthy snacks can offer many types of health benefits throughout your day. You should aim for snacks that are around 100 calories and have a mix of grains, protein and healthy fats. Aim to eat a snack about halfway between meals to keep your energy levels consistent.

Many people who do not eat healthy snacks between meals become so hungry that they reach for unhealthy junk food. A healthy snack made up of grains, protein and healthy fats increases your energy levels for a longer period of time than sugary snacks do. Also, adding healthy snacks can increase focus and performance, both at school and work.

Let’s take a look at a list of ideas for healthier snacking. Try one or two of these a week, and then gradually make these on a daily basis:

  • Cored sliced apples with peanut butter, oats, nuts and dark chocolate chips
  • Low-fat cottage cheese with fruit spread and unsalted pretzels
  • Raw veggies with hummus
  • Unsalted peanuts and raisins
  • Yogurt with your favorite sliced fruit
  • Ants on a log (celery with peanut butter and raisins)
  • Small salad with light dressing
  • Sugar free chocolate pudding and a banana to dip
  • Tuna and crackers
  • One hardboiled egg or two hardboiled egg whites only

Yogurt Fruit Crunch

  • 2 cups low-fat yogurt, plain or vanilla
  • 1 cup fruit, fresh or canned in light syrup or natural fruit juices (drained)
  • 1 cup dry cereal (low-fat granola, etc.)


  1. Mix yogurt and fruit together in a mixing bowl.
  2. Spoon into small bowls.
  3. Sprinkle ¼ cup cereal on top of each.

Number of servings: 4
Serving size: 1 cup
Preparation time: 10 minutes

Source of recipe: “Eating Right is Basic.” Michigan State University Extension

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