As a Nation, America has abandoned healthy snacks. According to the National Museum of American History, “between 1950 and 2000, the United States became a nation of snackers. Manufacturers introduced a host of packaged snacks that catered to basic cravings for sugar, salt, and fat. By the 1980s, people were consuming snacks everywhere. As these items became widely accessible and affordable, many questioned whether they were contributing to the loss of healthy eating patterns and the overconsumption of foods with little nutritional value.”
Our food industry is to blame
Nutritionally, snacking has changed as the food industry has discovered ways to sell more pre-packaged foods. America buys more packaged foods and as a Nation we have become more over-weight and more obese. With sugar being the main ingredient in these convenience foods, our metabolic rate has slowed down and today, we simply store more fat.
Our body needs energy to function- breathe, move, think, and for our organs to work properly. The body’s path of least resistance to access energy or fuel is glucose or SUGAR in the blood. When we have an overflow of blood sugar, our insulin system can become resistant and our body stores that glucose in our fat cells. This is the main reason men and women get non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, pre-diabetes, and type-2 diabetes. These are the “lifestyle” diseases that are often preventable with improved eating and consistent exercise.
Your goal as a healthy adult is to have a waist circumference that is half of your total height in inches. If that is not your current measurement, you are more likely to suffer from lifestyle diseases. These diseases include diabetes, heart disease, or stroke along with other possible diseases. Don’t worry, you can reverse this issue starting today!
Make the healthy snack change
Good news! We can change that statistic when we change our snack choices. Here is a printable list of healthy snacks you can use to replace your ultra-processed snacks, right now. The best way to start making the changes is to start small. Choose one snack to adjust. If you typically eat two snacks a day, start by changing your afternoon snack to a whole food. Once you are confident in making the change for one snack, adjust another one until you are eating more whole foods.
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