10 Healthy Snacks Every Stress Eater Should Have Handy

Stress eating is a difficult to avoid. Or at least it is for me but I suspect I am not alone. If I am under the gun or pressed for time or worried about something, I am not very mindful of what I am shoveling into my face. Jen McDaniel, RD, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, has some suggestions for calming this urge and preventing you from overeating. She says to pick snacks that have a combination of nutrients and will keep you satisfied without that killer sugar crash. Here are McDaniel's suggested snacks that are sure to satisfy all of us, no matter how stressed out.  

1. Ants on a Log

2 stalks celery + 2 Tbsp almond butter + 1 Tbsp raisins. Energizing carbs and filling fiber, fat, and protein. The perfect snack!

2. DIY Energy Bites 

½ c chopped dates + ¼ c rolled oats + ½ c nut butter, all mixed together and formed into 12 to 14 bites. Perfect for your sweet tooth while keeping your blood sugar stable.

3. Herbal Teas

  These teas are like giving your insides a hug. Chamomile specifically has been shown to ease anxiety and irritability; while green tea contains the amino acid L-Theanine, which provides a focused calm.

4. Open-Faced PB&B

1 slice whole-wheat toast + 1 Tbsp peanut butter + ½ banana + drizzle of honey. Foods that bring memories of childhood are naturally calming and as a bonus, this one happens to be healthy!

5.  Dark Chocolate-Covered Almonds

Dark chocolate has an intense flavour and can help curb cravings. 1 ounce per day can help reduce stress hormones.

6. Veggies & Dip

  2 sliced carrots or celery stalks + 2 Tbsp guacamole or hummus. This is perfect if you are a snacker who doesn't stop until you are full. Veggies make you feel full and the guac or hummus will help you to stay feeling that way all without making you bigger.

7. Mini Parfait 

½ cup yogurt + ½ cup blueberries + 1 oz chopped nuts. Dairy is full of calcium and protein and helps your body release feel good neurotransmitters.

8. Flavored Water 

  Try seltzer with cucumber slices or any fruit or vegetable combination you wish. Dehydration is often mistaken for hunger so if you make your drinks more appealing, you're more inclined drink.

9. Trail Mix

1 oz walnuts + 1 Tbsp dried cranberries or raisins + 1 Tbsp dark chocolate chips. Studies have shown that regularly snacking on walnuts may help your body respond better to stress.

10. Curry Roasted Chickpeas

Heat 1½ tsp olive oil in saucepan over medium-high heat. Add ½ c rinsed, drained, and dried chickpeas. Cook 5 to 7 minutes, flipping frequently. Toss with ½ tsp curry powder and a generous pinch each of cumin, paprika, garlic powder, and sea salt. Salt, crunch, no guilt. Perfect. What do you snack on when stressed? Which one of these snacks will you try first? Me, I'm starting with the chickpeas!  

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