Five Healthy Treats to Help You Control Cravings

By Isagenix Nutritional Sciences

Feeling guilty about snacking? You shouldn’t. When your stomach starts growling, snacking here and there is essential for managing hunger pangs. The trick is smart snacking by choosing healthy foods that will satisfy your cravings, but won’t affect your weight-management goals.

When considering options for snacks, don’t think of the bags of candy, candy bars, sugar cookies, slices of pizza, ice cream cones, or bags of potato chips – these foods only overload you with calories from fat and sugar, and are generally high in sodium too.

Look for healthy treats by seeking out the ones that are nutrient-dense and low in calories. This can mean they are high in protein or fiber, and contain good fats, balanced carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals.

These five treats are a few great examples of healthy snacks that will help you hold back the desire to overeat.

Healthy Treat #1: Fruits and Vegetables

Snacking on fruits and vegetables throughout the day is important for any healthy lifestyle. Plus, eating more of them over time can also help lead to lower body weight, according to large observational studies. With a few exceptions such as potatoes, fruits and vegetables are generally low in calories and rich fiber. Over time, their rich antioxidant vitamin and phytonutrient content also helps keep cells and the heart healthy.   

Should you only choose fruits and vegetables that are certified organic to avoid potentially toxic pesticides? Not necessarily. According to the Environmental Working Group, about 80 percent of exposure to pesticides can be avoided simply buying the top “dirty dozen” as certified organic:

  1. Peaches
  2. Apples
  3. Sweet Bell Peppers
  4. Celery
  5. Nectarines
  6. Strawberries
  7. Cherries
  8. Kale
  9. Lettuce
  10. Grapes – Imported
  11. Carrots
  12. Pears

Healthy Treat #2: Seeds and Nuts

Seeds and nuts are tasty treats because they are rich in protein and polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs). When PUFAs replace saturated fat in the diet, these oils can help keep your heart healthy. Another reason why nuts and seeds help guard heart health is vitamin E, fiber, and phytochemical content.

IsaCrunch™ hulled hempseed is particularly good for you, containing more protein per gram than even a hamburger and a balanced ratio of 3:1 omega-6 to omega-3 PUFAS. This ratio is thought to be similar to the ratio our hunter-gatherer ancestors consumed before the advent of mass agriculture.     

Healthy Treat #3: Protein Snacks and Bars

Protein needs increase as we get older while our need for calories drops since we move around less overall. In addition, there is sarcopenia, the degenerative loss of muscle mass and strength during aging. The muscle that is lost is replaced with fat tissue, so at times people don’t see a change in body weight, but this catches up to us over time. Getting enough protein daily along with performing a weight-bearing exercise can help to slow down loss of muscle and strength.

IsaLean® Bars are a sure-fire way of getting the protein you require daily. They contain high-quality whey protein. Whey is the protein source richest in branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs). BCAAs are the major triggers of protein synthesis and a diet rich in BCAAs is the best way to maintain muscle mass over time and, along with a weight-training program, fuel muscle gains and strength.  

IsaLean Bars are typically used as meal replacements and as supplements after workouts, but snacking on a third or half of a bar occasionally can be helpful for controlling cravings. Protein itself is the nutrient that most satisfies cravings.

So, don’t be fooled into using other “all-natural” bars that are not only high in saturated fat and sugars, but are falsely advertised as healthy treats! Some of these competing bars will do nothing for your health regimen and only add inches to your waistline.

Healthy Treat #4: Fiber cookies

Fiber cookies are delicious treats and can be added as snacks to any weight-management program because although they make us feel like we’re indulging, the truth is we’re really not.

There are a variety of benefits of eating a high-fiber diet, such as increasing satiety and stabilizing blood sugar. Fiber is a plant material that cannot be digested so it simply passes through the gastrointestinal tract. As it does, it slows down digestion, it helps us feel fuller sooner and longer, and takes along with it cholesterol and toxins, the removal of which can help support  heart and colon health.

Oatmeal Berry SlimCakes® are delicious fiber cookies that provide fewer than 100 calories with 5 grams of heart-healthy, colon-healthy fiber per cookie. They also come with flavorful and antioxidant-rich cranberries.

Unlike competing fiber cookies, SlimCakes have one nutrient-content claim and three health claims approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) listed on the label:

  • Excellent source of fiber
  • Heart healthy
  • Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease.
  • Low-fat diets rich in fiber-containing grain products, fruits, and vegetables may reduce the risk of some types of cancer, a disease associated with many factors.

Healthy Treat #5: Dark Chocolate

There is little else that people crave most when on a weight-management program than a piece or two of chocolate. Who can blame them? But typically, chocolate comes loaded with fat and sugar. This is not so with dark chocolate. Plus, eating the right dark chocolate will provide a high amount of antioxidant flavonols that are good for you.

IsaDelight Plus™ dark chocolates are mouth-watering, satisfying and provide only 50 calories. They are also rich in healthy flavonols, vitamins and amino acids. Plus, they come with added green tea extract for extra antioxidant protection.

The dark chocolates help support your mood and keep you going strong on your weight-management program.

Unlike other dark chocolates out there, the cocoa beans used to produce IsaDelight are sun-dried at the source, ethically traded with sustainable family farms near the equator, and roasted under specific conditions to produce a high-quality product rich in antioxidant flavonols. The dark chocolates produce an ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) score of 5,200 per each two pieces.

IsaDelight Plus cocoa content is always evaluated to ensure its free of contamination with pesticides or microbial content. Be wary of advertising claims of other dark chocolates such as “organic,” which puts farmers at an undue risk for losing their crops to disease (not ethical by our standpoint) and “raw” (if it was really raw, then their chocolate would be green).

Bonus Healthy Treat: Chewable Wafers

Isagenix Snacks!™ are chewable wafers that can help keep cravings away. They are balanced in nutrients and come in natural vanilla or chocolate flavors. They contain only 30 calories per serving and can be enjoyed on Cleanse Days or any other time.    

Losing Weight Without The Cravings

In sum, there is no reason to feel ashamed about having the urge to snack. Smart snacking is actually helpful in staying on a weight-management program by warding off cravings and eliminating the desire to overindulge. Snacking does not have to involve indulging on energy-dense foods like cheesecake!

Instead, as part of a weight-management program including a reduced-calorie diet and exercise, healthy snacks – such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, protein bars, fiber cookies, dark chocolate, and nutrient-balanced wafers – can assist you with losing those extra inches and unwanted pounds.