Guide to Choosing Heart-healthy Snacks

By Kary Woodruff

Earlier today I had the opportunity to host a webcast on heart-healthy grocery shopping and dining out. One of the questions submitted by one of the MyHeart Challenge: Play at Home Edition contestants was, "During the week I often grab granola bars, crackers, pretzels for snacks. I'm realizing that I'm eating too many carbs. What are some healthy alternatives I can buy to grab when I'm on the go?" Here are some great tips for snacking on the go. 


Snacks should be around 100-200 calories – enough to give us a little energy boost, but not too much that it will work against our health goals. You also don't want the snack to be so large that it ends up being equivalent to a full meal. The idea of a snack is to help tide you over, so stick to that 100-200 calorie snack.

Snacks ideally have a little bit of carbohydrate (whole grains, fruits/vegetables, or milk & yogurt) and some protein.

They can be a great opportunity to meet our fruits and vegetable needs, too. Here are some examples of snacks you can try:

 - Veggies + hummus
 - Apple + string cheese
 - Plain nonfat yogurt + berries
 - Cucumbers + cottage cheese

Almonds are also one of the snacks I recommended during the webcast. Go with unsalted, and have a little bag of them in your purse or desk at work. If you start to get the munchies, reach for some of those instead of the chocolate or candies that are often found around the office.

Check out the webcast so you can get all the information about healthier shopping (and eating). It will be available in the archives shortly, so if you don't see it immediately, check back in a few days.