Snacks play a major role in your diet, from maintaining your blood sugar to your satiety levels until your next meal. Healthy snacking between meals keeps the hunger at bay and also prevents you from overeating. Some of the best snacking options these days are mixed nuts, yogurt with fruits, kale chips, chia seed pudding, and protein bars from the brands like MuscleBlaze, RiteBite, Yogabars, and much more.
Since the last few years, fad diets have become very popular due to which Indian snacks have developed a bad reputation. When it comes to Indian snacks everyone thinks of onion kachori, gol gappas, samosas, and panipuri. However, Indian snack is not limited to these snacks, also healthy versions of these snacks can be created very easily. There are so many healthy options for Indian snacks that are packed with essential nutrients.
Benefits Of Including Snacks To Your Diet
Healthy snacking is a major part of a healthy eating plan. Whether you are an athlete, stay at home parent, working professional, or student in school or college, everyone can achieve benefits from healthy snacking.
Some of the benefits of healthy snacking are:
Gives You A Boost Of Energy
Healthy snacks give you a boost of energy. According to studies, those who indulge in healthy snacks during the day had good energy levels, focus, and overall performance.
Helps In Healthy Weight Management
Healthy snacking options help in avoiding unhealthy munching or extreme hunger. The nutritionist recommended eating smaller healthy meals throughout the day after 3 hours intervals, which helps in preventing binge eating and stops you from reaching for a chocolate bar, sugar-loaded snacks, etc.
Blood sugar levels fluctuate the entire day but they tend to drop about 4 to 5 hours after you have eaten food. Indulging in small yet frequent healthy snacks not only speeds up your metabolism but also normalizes blood sugar levels. Snacks such as low-fat dairy products, fruits, legumes, nuts, and whole grains have a lot of nutrition and make you feel full for a longer period.
Food is an essential fuel for the body. Nutrient poor foods give you a fuel rush and crash quickly while nutrient-dense foods give you consistent and slow sources and make you feel happy and alert. Nutrient poor foods make you feel hungry, and cranky whereas healthy snacking provides your body with the slow-burning fuel that keeps you energetic throughout the day and you will not experience alertness or mood swings.
Things to consider when choosing healthy snacks:
- Say no to products with high sodium content or sugar.
- Choose foods with low sugar and fat but high in fibre.
- Always take the recommended portion size and don’t overdo it as it can promote unnecessary weight gain.
- Vegetables, fruits, low-fat dairy products, and whole-grain snacks make the best snacks.
- Limit your intake of drinks that contains added sugar like colas, soft drinks, and packed fruit juice. Instead have a piece of fruit or smoothies.
- Don’t eat food that contains corn syrup.
- Have complex carbs and proteins together to maintain your satiety levels. Some of the best examples are apple and cheese bread and peanut butter, fresh fruit, and yogurt etc. This will keep you full for longer.
Guilt-Free Indian Snacks Options To Include In Your Diet
Dosa is one of the healthy and delicious dishes that is loved by all. This dish is made from urad dal and fermented rice batter. You can also use oatmeal, sprouted moong dal, ragi, and semolina to make this. Single plain dosa provides 133 calories mostly from proteins and carbohydrates in it. It also contains calcium, potassium, and iron, which makes it a completely healthy dish.
Makhanas are rich sources of protein along with other essential nutrients with less fat content. These are an excellent choice for an evening snack, you can roast them dry in a pan or sprinkle some pepper and salt to make it more mouth-watering.
Boiled Sprouts or Chana
This snack is a very good source of fiber, protein, potassium, and iron that keeps you feeling full for a longer period of time and helps you to keep on track with fitness goals and overall health.
Fruits or Vegetable Salad
Mixing your favorite vegetables and fruits in a bowl with some chat masala and lemon is another delicious and healthy snack that is easy to make. Vegetables and fruits are a good source of micronutrients and fiber that keep you satiated and maintain your weight management goals in the long run.
Dhokla is one of Gujarat’s famous snacks, which is made from rice and fermented chickpeas batter. It can be eaten as a snack or in breakfast. A single serving of dhokla contains 11 grams of protein, 283 calories, and zero cholesterol. This snack is also a perfect source of calcium, magnesium, and iron.
Sandwiches are easy to make, the perfect snack. You can make a curd sandwich at home. It is made using thick curd, fresh vegetables like bell peppers, onion, cabbage, carrots, whole wheat bread, and black pepper, fresh coriander, and salt. This delicious snack is high in fibre, low in fat, and contains a good amount of protein, vitamin A and C, calcium and iron.
Idlis can be eaten as breakfast or lunch item and also as a snack. This is another snack made from urad dal and fermented rice batter, you can also make them from other ingredients like oatmeal, ragi, semolina etc. Single medium-sized idli provides 2 grams of protein 36 calories and 8 grams of carbohydrates. Idlis also contain calcium and iron. This snack not only keeps you full but also maintain your blood sugar levels.
Best Snack Time
The ideal time to consume snacks is every 2 to 3 hours after your main meals. To get better results consume Indian snacks during the day. If you are someone who is dealing with late-night hunger pangs can have them as a post-dinner snack like roasted snacks. But make sure to have them 2-3 hours before your bedtime and is low in caloric content.
When it comes to delicious and healthy snacking you will find various of options available among Indian snacks. This will help you to feel energetic and while helping you to maintain your weight.
What is your favorite healthy Indian snack? Feel free to share with us in the comment section below.