Happy Friday! It’s time to talk about Habit #2: Easy-access snacks. I hear from most of my clients that a major challenge in the office environment is easy access to high-calorie, tempting treats. Whether it’s the candy dish in the reception area or the huge jar of peanuts in your co-worker’s office, it can be all to easy to mindlessly munch on goodies throughout the day. To make matters worse, these occurrences aren’t just limited to office birthdays and holidays! It seems like any day of the week there is a likelihood that someone will bring some type of tempting treat and place it in your path.

In the intro article, I shared a few quick-fix ideas for how to avoid the high-calorie snacks lurking around the office. Today, I’m going to share some ideas for healthy snacks you can stash in your office or your bag to help you avoid the other tempting treats lurking in the office.

Previously (See the first article Here), I mentioned two quick-fixes to employ to avoid mindlessly eating the random assortment of food that’s left out in your office environment:

1. Physically avoid the areas where snacks tend to be stashed, and

2. Enlist the help of a co-worker for accountability. These can work well, but it definitely helps to have your own healthy snacks when hunger strikes.

Quality of your snack matters, too. Try to pair at least 2 of the macro-nutrients together to make a complete snack that will keep you satisfied. In case you are unfamiliar, the 3 macros are: carbohydrate, protein, and fat. Example snack pairings:

-Turkey (protein) and avocado (fat)

-Hummus (protein + carb), olives (fat), and veggies to dip (technically a carbohydrate)

-Greek yogurt (protein) + berries (low-carb) + walnuts (fat)

When making a plan for how to tackle in-office temptations, I like to approach this challenge from three different angles:

  1. Bring your own lunch and snacks daily

When you bring your own food from home, you have total control over what you are eating. I highly recommend making this a habit if possible! Here are some of my favorite fresh-from-home snacks:

-Deli sliced natural roasted turkey with a piece of fruit and a small handful of nuts

-Turkey and avocado lettuce wraps with grapes on the side (snack size portion)

-Tuna salad with chopped veggies mixed in and cucumber slices as a vehicle for eating

-Protein smoothie with protein powder, mostly veggies, and 1 serving of fruit for flavor

  1. Keep snacks stored in your office

Even if you’ve got a fridge in your office, you’ll want to stash non-perishables here so that they don’t go bad. Here are a few ideas for you:

-Jerky or other meat sticks (I like Epic Bars, Paleo Valley sticks, and Chomps meat sticks- All responsibly sourced and containing minimal ingredients)

-Rx bars

-Baby food packets for pureed veggies (pick flavors that have at least 2 veggies with one fruit for flavoring).

-Trail mix

  1. Keep snacks stored in your purse or bag

These also need to be non-perishable unless you’re just toting a snack around for the day. In this case, some of the more durable fruits can come in handy (like an apple with a single serve packet of nut butter).

If you can manage to have at least one emergency snack in each area mentioned above, then you should be covered no matter where you find yourself hungry and surrounded by tempting treats. Don’t forget to re-stock when your supplies run low! Add your items to your grocery list when you’ve only got one left so that you aren’t completely out. In case you aren’t crazy about any of the suggestions I’ve offered, here are a few other resources to check out for ideas:

Greatist: https://greatist.com/eat/portable-energy-boosting-snacks

The Organic Dietician: http://www.theorganicdietitian.com/25-healthy-balanced-snack-ideas/

Whole 30: https://whole30.com/downloads/whole30-travel.pdf

It’s your turn: apply these tips now!

  1. Make a grocery list for the items that you’ll need to be armed with healthy, filling snacks.
  2. Stock up your office and purse and create your re-fill system (i.e. how will you track your supplies and make sure you replenish them when needed?)

Stay tuned: Next week I’ll be covering Habit #3: Afternoon Pick-Me-Up and ways to avoid over-caffeinating (yes, there is such a thing!). In the meantime, keep practicing your stretches and exercises from part 1, stock up your office and bag with healthy snacks, and get excited for next week’s blog! Enjoy your weekend!