It's easy to see why pistachios ranked as one of the best nuts for weight loss, they've helped countless Biggest Loser contestants trim down. "We keep pistachios in ample supply at the ranch, says Biggest Loser dietitian Cheryl Forberg, RD. "Not only are they a satisfying, heart-healthy snack, they also aid weight loss. Studies suggest having to manually remove the shell helps people eat more mindfully and slows the rate at which they nosh, helping to reduce portion size and calorie intake, she explains"
They're mini health packets. Fresh herbs are calorie-free and loaded with antioxidants and other healthy ingredients. Basil and mint contain compounds that are potential cancer fighters; rosemary may help fight memory loss; and cilantro appears to slow the growth of certain bacteria that cause food-borne illness. Herbs are also a viable source of vitamins: 2 tablespoons of fresh basil, for example, delivers 27 percent of your recommended daily quotient of vitamin K, and just a handful of chives provides 10 percent of your daily requirement for vitamins A and C.
It's as simple a snack recipe as can be, but unusually satisfying: For a twist on plain homemade popcorn, try drizzling it with olive oil and sprinkling it with za'atar, the heady Middle Eastern spice blend of oregano, thyme, sesame seeds, and tart sumac. You can check out all our popcorn flavors here, including Thai coconut curry, miso soup, and roast chicken dinner; those three are vegan if you swap out the butter.
Quesadillas without cheese may seem like a contradiction in terms, but they are indeed a thing in Mexico—and, more to the point, they can be delicious. Here, we mix mashed leftover sweet potato with cilantro, scallions, and pickled jalapeños (though you can sub whatever other quesadilla fillings strike your fancy); spread it over half of a flour tortilla; fold it; and cook it in plenty of oil, just as we recommend in our basic quesadilla guide.
Packed with fiber, water, and antioxidants, fruits and vegetables are great choices for diet-friendly snacking. But the standard banana or carrots and ranch dip can get old quick. Instead, try a sliced apple with a lowfat cheese wedge, like Laughing Cow Light. "Having a little extra fat is good in a snack because it sustains you longer," says McLachlan.
If you're looking for a creative way to add more fruit to your diet, try frozen banana pops. Slice several peeled bananas in half and insert popsicle sticks. Coat each half with an ounce of low-fat plain yogurt. Put the pops in the freezer, and soon you'll have ready-to-eat low-calorie treats. At just under 80 calories a pop, this is a snack you can feel good about.
For a sweet fix, try mixing mandarin oranges canned in their own juice with a couple tablespoons of light whipped topping. The oranges give a great hit of vitamin C and other antioxidants, and the light whipped topping gives the snack an indulgent feel (a feeling you often miss when you're watching what you eat). "This is a good substitute for ice cream when you're dieting," adds McLachlan.
Yogurt is and shall remain an important component in our snacking culture. And I’m not speaking of those over-sugared versions, but of proper plain natural yogurt. Make a craft out of it. You won’t believe how many different, almost artisan creations you can come up with. The ingredients of the version above are grapes, walnuts, some cinnamon and a few sprinkles of maple syrup. Love it! Up for more ideas? Have a look over here.
With Whole Foods being the epitome of all things fresh and healthy, all those special vegan treats and goodies can be loaded with fat and unnecessary oils. I’ve been making a conscious effort to follow this low fat, high carb plant based diet (without stressing about it though) because it allows me to feel my absolute best, eat unlimited amounts of food and maintain my weight without paying attention to calories, portions etc. You can just be. There is no other lifestyle like that!