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5 Healthy Snacks That Won't Destroy Your Progress

5 Healthy Snacks That Won't Destroy Your Progress

However, while unhealthy snacking can lead to a gain in body fat, healthy and strategic snacking can be beneficial, especially if you are a ‘hard gainer’, an athlete with high caloric needs, or are focusing on adding muscle mass. Here are some healthy snacks ideas you should include.

1. Nuts

Nuts are one of the healthiest foods you can eat, being an important source of healthy fats, fiber, and minerals. While they may seem calorie dense, they can be suitable for those trying to lose weight as well, with some research showing those who ate nuts as a snack lost more weight than those who did not.
Some of the best nuts include:
Brazil nuts
Along with being very high in monounsaturated fat, which can promote healthy cholesterol levels and brain function, they are also high in vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, manganese, and selenium. Plus, nuts are an easy food to carry with you while you run errands – just be sure to weigh out your portion as they can add up quickly in calories from fat!

Read More: Snacks Before Bedtime Will Help You Burn Fat And Sleep Well

2. Beef Jerky

Beef jerky is another staple snack for the bodybuilder. Convenient and rich in high-quality protein, beef jerky is chock full of the essential amino acids you need to build muscle and recover.

If you pick a natural source of beef jerky, without added sugar, it is a healthy and low-calorie snack. It also contains vital minerals and nutrients such as omega-3 fats, CLA, and zinc. Where possible, you should aim to consume beef jerky that is free from nitrates and MSG.
An average serving will contain around 70-80 calories, 1g fat, 0-3g carbs, 0g fiber, 0-2g sugar, and 12g protein. Look for options with the lowest sugar content (often those without a lot of added flavoring), as this will keep the carb count lower.

3. Fruit

Fruit is another great go-to snack used by all populations, from office workers to elite athletes.
There are obviously many types of fruit, all of which will provide different health benefits, nutrients, vitamins, and antioxidants. For this reason, many authorities and experts recommend you rotate the fruit sources, allowing you to get a mix of antioxidants and nutrients.

For weight loss, some of the lowest calorie fruits include raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, oranges, and melon.
For weight gain or energy, reach for fruits like banana, mango, pineapple, and dried fruit options. These varieties are higher in sugar, making them great snacks to have around your workout when higher insulin levels can be beneficial.

4. Yogurt

Yogurt is another perfect snack when you are on the move and need to provide some slow-digesting protein to keep your muscles growing until your next meal.

There are obviously better and worse choices you can make when it comes to purchasing yogurt. Some varieties are incredibly high in sugar and fat, and low in protein. However, if you avoid these, and chose a natural, high protein yogurt, they can be incredibly healthy, full of casein protein, calcium, and gut-friendly bacteria.
Some of the best brands include Fage Total, Danone Light & Fit, and Yoplait Greek. If you find the tartness of Greek yogurt unpleasant, you can try flavoring it with a little bit of protein powder, cinnamon, or some Stevia.

On average, one cup of unflavored and unsweetened yogurt will contain around 25g protein, 10g carb, and 0g fat, if you pick the fat-free variety. If you’re eating to gain muscle, the full-fat version is still incredibly healthy.

5. Cuts of Meat & Other Protein Sources

Protein is a key nutrient for athletes. If you’re struggling to add muscle mass, recover maximally, or just hit your daily protein needs, adding one or two high-protein snacks per day can make all the difference.

Try adding one of these convenient high-protein snacks into your daily mix:
  • Low-fat cheese
  • Lean cuts of meat
  • Beef jerky
  • High-protein yogurt
  • Whey protein such as RE-KAGED
  • Casein protein such as KASEIN
  • Protein bars (keep an eye on the fat and carb content)
  • Eggs