Have you ever skipped lunch because you didn’t have time or the foods you needed to prepare it? Or have you spent breaks at your computer, munching away at a granola bar you happened to find at the bottom of your bag? By the end of the day, all you want to do is crawl home and collapse on the couch.
Consider the potential food has to fuel your day—make every bite count.
Each March, food lovers and dietitians across Canada celebrate Nutrition Month. This year’s theme is Unlock the Potential of Food!
In an ideal world, we would all eat delicious and nourishing meals multiple times a day. The truth is, 49 per cent of Canadians find eating balanced meals challenging when they are busy. The key to fueling your body on a time crunch is planning food that you can prepare and eat in a flash. Planning snacks is a great way to do that.
Did you know that about 30 per cent of Canadians snack every day? That’s because snacking is a great way to help you meet your nutrition needs, particularly when you don’t have a lot of time. The important part is to choose foods that are packed with the energy and nutrients you need to keep you fueled for longer and feeling great.
Snacks that you can grab and eat in a flash:
- Raw vegetables (cucumber, carrots, etc.) with store-bought hummus, nut butter, or cottage cheese
- Greek yogurt topped with unsalted nuts or fruits (or both!)
- Homemade trail mix (dry cereal or plain popcorn, dried fruit, unsalted nuts, or seeds)
- A low-fat latte and an apple
- A slice of whole grain bread with nut butter
- Whole grain crackers with canned tuna
- Hardboiled egg with a handful of grapes
Here are some more examples.
Carbohydrates in foods like fruit, bread and crackers, and milk and milk products are your body’s main source of fuel. Fruit and whole grain products contain fibre that will keep you feeling fuller for longer. Most Canadians only get half the fibre they need every day. Up your fibre intake by eating whole grain snacks, fruits and vegetables. Protein and fats in foods like hummus, nut butters, or eggs help keep you satisfied for longer, too. And whenever possible, choose easy-to-eat snacks that are minimally processed. They tend to be lower in salt, sugar, and saturated fat, three things we want to eat less of.
It really is that simple.
Find more information about Nutrition Month on the Dietitians of Canada website and explore these 5 topics to unlock the potential of food. You’ll also find some great handouts, recipes, an activity map, and much more.
Author’s Bio: Today’s blog was written by Sharon Voong. Sharon is a dietetic intern with Vancouver Coastal Health. You can find her hidden under a mountain of cookbooks, drinking coffee, and testing new recipes on her family.