Protein Power

Protein Power
Posted on 12/14/2017
Nuts and Fruit

What’s the secret to a snack that has staying power and will help you and your kids last between meals, school, work and all of the extracurricular activities??  Protein!  This nutrient is a hunger-busting powerhouse because it slows digestion, keeps blood sugar steady and helps keep cravings at bay.  Protein is an important component of every cell in the body. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues, make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals and is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, blood, hair, nails, skin, and blood.  Protein is also a "macronutrient," meaning that the body needs it consistently throughout the day, so it is imperative to consume it regularly, and not just at mealtime.  Consuming protein as a part of your snack will help your body stay nourished for a longer period of time than only consuming a carbohydrate food (crackers, pretzels, fruit, granola bar, etc.).  The key is including both a protein and carbohydrate food, which is the perfect combination and is easy to take on the go.  Here are a few great examples of a variety of on-to-go protein snacks that both parents and kids will enjoy! 

  • Cheese + Cracker or Fruit
  • Peanut Butter/Nut Butter + Cracker or Fruit
  • Milk + Cereal
  • Nuts + Dried Fruit
  • Hummus + Vegetables (carrots, cucumber, peppers, jicama, cherry tomato)
  • Greek Yogurt + Fresh or Dried Fruit
  • Hardboiled Egg + Cracker
  • Edamame (soybean in pod)
  • Roasted Chickpeas
  • Kefir (creamy, drinkable yogurt)
  • Whole Grain Granola/Protein Bar (aim for a bar with about 10 to 15 grams of protein with at least 5 grams of fiber and less than 15 grams of sugar)
  • Veggie Roll-up’s (low sodium turkey or ham rolled with cucumber, tomato, spinach, red pepper)

 "Supported by the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership, Minnesota Department of Health and Dakota County Public Health Department"