healthy snacking

I've talked before about my pregnancy food cravings and how I'm entirely gripped with the want…no, the NEED…for unhealthy stuff like oreos and jalapeño poppers at 3am. Staving off these snack attacks is a difficult job, especially with hormones raging and baby-induced hunger taking over my body like I'm sort sort of out-of-control alien vessel. But I'm doing my best to get rid of the junk food and focus on healthy snacking so that this baby gets the best nutrition I can give. Here are my healthy snacking tips.

Get rid of the junk food. Don't save it for a special “treat” or some sort of reward after a hard day. It's far too easy to cave. Best of all, if you're pregnant you're probably feeling fatigued and will be too dang lazy to get in the car and go pick up an unhealthy snack when cravings hit.

Balance. It's tempting to graze on carbs all day, but that will keep you feeling sleepy and always needing another snack to help get you through. Think of snacks as small meals and balance them, making sure you get a carb, protein and vegetable in each sitting whenever possible.

Don't give in on the go. Pack bags of nuts and fruit to have on hand when you're out running errands. This will save you money and keep you from resorting to the nearest fast food joint.

Hydrate. Oftentimes your body misinterprets thirst as hunger, so try drinking some water before reaching for the snacks. It's a good idea to keep water nearby at all times so you learn to resort to that instead of food when you're bored or needing to refuel. Just be sure to drink water and not take up the habit of guzzling soda or sugar fruit juice.

popcorn healthy snacking

Plan for your weak moments. I used to love munching on oreos while watching TV at night with Nate. I have a hard time sitting still post-dinner without some sort of snack…largely because between nausea and heartburn, I now have trouble eating a full meal and I get hungry about every five minutes. So I ditched the cookies and stocked up on lower-calorie popcorn to satisfy my late-night cravings. But be careful: a lot of popcorn and even crackers have a lot more calories than you'd think. I've started taking Orville Redenbacher's “Healthy Snacking Challenge” with SmartPop popcorn – it has just 100 calories per 6 cups and is 94% fat free! Best of all, it comes in this cool pop up bowl for easy sharing, so I don't have to get out any dishes.

For more on Orville Redenbacher's SmartPop popcorn check out their Facebook page, which features a $1 off coupon and some fun games.

I wrote this review while participating in a campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Orville and received product samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for my participation.