Snack Attack

Often, when people try to eat healthy, they focus on making big changes – after all, big changes yield big results, right?  Eating smaller, more natural portions can go a long way in helping you lose weight and get in shape, but what about the things you eat between those healthy meals?

Avoiding unhealthy meals is a really significant way to get healthier and lose weight.  But unhealthy meals aren’t the only things working against us.  The real danger, in my opinion, is snacking.  Candy bars, bags of chips, and sodas wait around like little traps for us every day.  One false move and we’ve consumed 1,000 empty calories.

In my effort to eat better, I’ve been cooking a lot more.  It can be time-consuming and tedious, but the results are always worth it.  But what do I do when I get really hungry and the chicken I’m cooking for dinner hasn’t even started marinating yet?  Like anyone else, I snack.  But I snack well.

For whatever reason, it’s easier for me to turn down a candy bar than, say, a pizza.  Even before I began consciously trying to eat clean, I usually ate pretty good snacks.  A typical post-workout or grading-papers snack for me is an apple, a wedge of cheese, and some nuts.  And no sodas – just a nice, hot cup of tea.

Since I have started intentionally eating clean, I’ve discovered that trail mix is an excellent snack to add to this mix.  In fact, I tossed some together just last night.

I went to Wegmans yesterday and picked up a few things to mix up. (Have I mentioned how in love I am with that place?  Wherever I end up putting down roots had better have one.)  There’s this great “bulk foods” section of the store where you can buy 814 varieties of candy by the pound and just as many varieties of nuts and healthy things too.

Enter ingredients.

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Chopped walnuts, almonds, pistachios, sunflower seeds, chocolate chips, and craisins.

Yes, I put chocolate chips in my trail mix.  These are basic milk chocolate, but you could include some dark chocolate instead – good for the heart, right?  I already had the bag of craisins, but they were also available in the bins.  Most of the nuts in this department are roasted, and there’s an option of salted or not.  I chose not.  When I got home, the only real work I had was shelling the pistachios… and Steve did that for me.

And now for a recipe so easy it hardly qualifies as a recipe: gather ingredients, put in bowl.

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It’s a yummy, healthy snack and also very portable.  Since being on the go can lead to things like French fries, I’ve gotten into the habit of taking a bag of it with me when I’m out working or running errands.   I also always have a Tervis full of iced water with me – but that’s a post for another day!

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