What to eat for a snack when trying to stay in shape in your 30s

What to eat for a snack when trying to stay in shape in your 30s

TL;DR

The difference between success and failure can sometimes be down to deciding what to eat for a snack.

We’re not about completely avoiding things like chocolate bars or biscuits, but we’re all about making snack choices that support your aims.

Opt for snacks that are rich in protein, high in fibre, low in calories and sugar, and include “healthy fats”.

From Greek yogurt with berries to boiled eggs (urgh!), the right snacks can be both delicious and fitness-friendly.

The key is finding snacks that you enjoy and that fit seamlessly into your eating plan.

Read the full post for a go-to list of quickfire snacks…

Let’s face it, snacking has gotten a bad rep in the world of nutrition, especially when it comes to fat loss.

It’s usually one of the most ticked boxes on my client intake questionnaire: “What’s your biggest nutrition challenge?: Snacking when not hungry/Mindless snacking” *Tick!*

Here’s the thing – eating snacks in and of itself isn’t a problem. In fact, it can be a great way to stave off hunger when you’re trying to drop body fat, and it can be a great way to top up when you’re trying to build muscle.

But with how busy we are, especially when you’re 30+, snacking can degenerate into a grab & go of whatever you can get your hands on (And if that just so happens to be the biscuit jar that your girlfriend left full and unguarded, then that’s not your fault is it? Right?!)

However, with a tiny bit of planning, snacks can help you stay in control of your nutrition, and in this post, we’ll dive into the art of smart snacking – how to choose snacks that satisfy, support your goals, and keep you on track without feeling deprived.

WHAT TO EAT FOR A SNACK WHEN TRYING TO STAY IN SHAPE IN YOUR 30S

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A SNACK: YOUR CRITERIA FOR SMART CHOICES

When it comes to snacking with fat loss in mind, not all snacks are created equal. Here’s what to keep an eye out for to ensure your snacks are working for you, not against you:

  1. PROTEIN-DENSE: We’ve talked about the importance of protein, and it bears repeating. Opt for snacks that pack a high protein punch without loading up on calories. This helps in muscle maintenance and keeps you fuller for longer.
  2. HIGH IN FIBRE: Fibre is your friend for fat loss. It aids in digestion and keeps you feeling satiated, which can help curb overeating. Look for snacks that are rich in fibre.
  3. LOW IN CALORIES: The goal is to find snacks that are satisfying and filling but don’t blow your calorie budget. The more volume you can get for fewer calories, the better.
  4. LOW IN SUGAR: I’m not here to demonise sugar. But there’s enough added sugar floating around in foods, so if we’re making a deliberate choice with our snacking, opt for low sugar..
  5. CONTAINS HEALTHY FATS: Fats are essential, but the key is to choose snacks with healthy fats while keeping an eye on portion sizes, as fats are calorie-dense.
[As I said at the top, you don’t have to avoid “treats” completely! In fact if you’re doing it mindfully, you can easily include those kinds of foods. But they ideally wouldn’t make up the bulk of your snacks.]

SNACK SMART: YOUR GO-TO LIST

READY-MADE SNACKS:

  1. Greek Yoghurt with Berries (Veg): A powerhouse of protein paired with the antioxidant goodness of berries. Perfect for breakfast or a quick snack.
  2. Apple Slices with Nut Butter (Veg, Vegan options): The fibre in the apple and the protein plus healthy fats in the nut butter make for a satisfying snack. Remember, nut butters are more about the fats than the protein, so watch those portions!
  3. Boiled Eggs (Veg): Definitely not my thing, but high in protein and incredibly portable. They’re a great pick for a quick protein fix.
  4. Protein Shake (Veg, Vegan options): Ideal for those on-the-go moments.
  5. Light Babybels (Veg): Who doesn’t love cheese? These light versions are high in protein and low in calories, making them a great snack to top up your protein intake.
  6. Fruit in General (Veg, Vegan): Packed with fibre and nutrients, helping you feel full and nourished.

SNACKS WITH SOME PREP:

  1. Veggie Sticks with Hummus (Veg, Vegan): A crunchy, fibre-rich snack. Just be mindful of the hummus portions – it’s delicious but can be calorie-dense.
  2. Low-Fat Cottage Cheese and Pineapple (Veg): A great mix of protein and natural sugars for an energy boost.
  3. Tuna Salad: Not just for meals – a high-protein, omega-3-rich snack that’s both filling and nutritious.
  4. Quinoa Salad (Veg, Vegan options): A small portion packs a punch with protein and fibre.
  5. Avocado on Toast (Veg, Vegan if using vegan-friendly bread) – This CAN be a great snack, with healthy fats and fibre to keep you full. However, avocados are calorie-dense so don’t go smushing 3 whole avocados on 3 pieces of bread, and call it a healthy snack. Use sparingly.
  6. Turkey Roll-Ups: Roll slices of turkey with veggies and a dollop of hummus for flavor. A protein-packed, portable snack.

FOR THE MORE ADVENTUROUS:

  1. Edamame (Veg, Vegan): A quick, protein and fibre-rich snack that’s easy to prepare.
  2. Crispy Kale (Veg, Vegan): For those crunchy, salty cravings, this is a winner. Just go easy on the oil and salt. Throw on a little paprika for extra flavour
  3. Super Shake/Smoothie with Spinach and Berries (Veg, Vegan options): A nutrient-packed option. Add a scoop of protein powder for an extra boost.
  4. Cooked Meats: Cook and portion your own lean meats like chicken or turkey for a ready-to-go, protein-packed snack.

WHAT NEXT

Feel free to mix and match these snacks based on your preferences and dietary needs. Remember, these are just suggestions. It’s up to you to come up with your own go-to list when deciding what to eat for a snack. Just make sure they fit what you’re trying to achieve.

  • – Which of these have you tried?
  • – Do you have your own go to snacks?
  • – Any on this list you wouldn’t touch?
  • – Are boiled eggs the worst snack on the list?

JUMP IN THE COMMENTS BELOW AND LET ME KNOW.

Got a question about what to eat for a snack; fitting snacks into your wider eating plan; or anything else related to your exercise or nutrition? You can ask that in the comments too…


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About the Author Alvin Nurse

Alvin runs Reboot Fitness Coaching and has been a Fitness Coach since 2010. When not helping awesome people in their 30s rejuvenate their bodies, you'll find him listening to music, chasing a ball, or avoiding runny yolks...

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