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National Healthy Snack Month Archives - Totally Food https://totally-food.com/category/national-healthy-snack-month/ Great things to eat! Thu, 19 Dec 2019 05:49:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=6.0.1 135451410 National Healthy Snack Month, Day 9 – Grilled Pineapple https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-9-grilled-pineapple/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-9-grilled-pineapple https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-9-grilled-pineapple/#respond Mon, 05 Mar 2018 07:24:44 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=2154 Grilled pineapple is easy to make an somehow makes the pineapple taste better.  We posted our grilled pineapple recipe so you have it to try. Pineapple is a delicious tropical […]

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grilled pineapple

Grilled pineapple is easy to make an somehow makes the pineapple taste better.  We posted our grilled pineapple recipe so you have it to try.

healthy snackPineapple is a delicious tropical fruit primarily grown in Hawaii.  It has been enjoyed for centuries not only for its taste but also for its amazing health benefits.  I think the one health benefit most people associate with pineapple is its ability to act as a digestive aid.  But it so good for so much more.

These also include boosting the immune system, improving respiratory health, strengthening bones, reducing inflammation, curing coughs and colds, and weight loss.  This is because pineapples are rich in nutrients, vitamins, and minerals, including potassium, copper, manganese, calcium, magnesium, vitamin C, beta-carotene, thiamin, vitamin B6, and folate, and bromelain, as well as soluble and insoluble fiber.

Pineapples are also known for their ability to reduce inflammation, particularly in the joints making it useful for people with arthritis. This is due to a relatively rare proteolytic enzyme called bromelain contained in pineapple, which is associated with breaking down complex proteins and has strong anti-inflammatory effects.

This tropical fruit also has several health benefits you wouldn’t expect.  Pineapples have astringent properties, which strengthen gums and teeth. These astringent agents also help tighten up tissues and tone the body so that tooth loss, hair loss, muscle weakness and skin loosening are reduced.

Another important health benefit is the ability of pineapple to improve eye health and prevent other age-related eye diseases such as macular degeneration.

I don’t get into detailed scientific papers on the various health benefits of foods we have been presenting for national healthy snack month.  I don’t think that should really be necessary.  If you have been following along, I think you too will see the common thread through all of them.  Most all whole, natural foods are loaded with vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and other nutrients that fight disease and help us maintain good health.  That is why we started national healthy snack month… to ease us over into diets that have more natural whole foods and less processed foods.

To feeling good!

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National Healthy Snack Month, Day 8 – Dried Cranberries https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-8-dried-cranberries/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-8-dried-cranberries https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-8-dried-cranberries/#respond Mon, 05 Mar 2018 05:58:09 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=2144 You most likely think of cranberries as a food eaten around the holidays.  And fresh cranberries are a little too tart and messy to take with you to work to […]

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You most likely think of cranberries as a food eaten around the holidays.  And fresh cranberries are a little too tart and messy to take with you to work to much on.  

national healthy snack month
Pin it. Celebrate National Healthy Snack Month

Dried cranberries are a delicious change of pace from raisins and a great snack for National Healthy Snack Month.  They are easily available in most grocery stores but I do recommend you read the label before choosing a brand.  Some contain added sugar and preservatives.  Try to find ones that are as close to natural as possible.

Cranberries are native to North America and have a high nutrient and antioxidant content. They are often referred to as a “super food.” Half a cup of cranberries contains only 25 calories.

They are low in calories and high in vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin K. They also contain proanthocyanidins (PACs), an antioxidant that may help prevent a range of diseases.

The nutrients in cranberries have been linked to a lower risk of urinary tract infections, prevention of certain types of cancer, improved immune function, and decreased blood pressure.

So go ahead and splurge on some dried cranberries and when your co-workers ask for a few, be sure to tell them about National Healthy Snack Month.

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National Healthy Snack Month, Day 7 – Guacamole https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-7-guacamole/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-7-guacamole https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-7-guacamole/#respond Thu, 01 Mar 2018 03:51:17 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=2119 Guacamole makes for a very healthy snack for National Snack Month, or National Healthy Snack Month that is. And if you, like me, feel wheat or corn tortilla chips aren’t […]

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Guacamole makes for a very healthy snack for National Snack Month, or National Healthy Snack Month that is. And if you, like me, feel wheat or corn tortilla chips aren’t the best choices, you can substitute some black bean tortilla chips.

Why guacamole is such a great choice for healthy snack month has to do, of course with the avocados!

So much has been said about why avocados are good for you.  First off they are a great source of many vitamins including E, K, C, B-6, niacin, pantothenic acid, magnesium, potassium.  They also contain omega-3 fatty acids.

Avocados may actually help with weight loss too because they contain fat.  Yes, you read that right.  Fat is essential for every single cell in the body.  The fats in avocados are healthy fats that signal the brain to turn off your appetite.  It also slows the breakdown of carbohydrates which helps regulate blood sugar levels.

Eating avocados may also help prevent osteoporosis due to the high levels of vitamin K.  While calcium is most commonly thought of for bone health, vitamin K is necessary for adequate calcium absorption.

Folate from foods has shown promise in protecting against colon, stomach, pancreatic, and cervical cancers.  Avocados provide folate.  They are high in fiber and also have anti-microbial action.

Who would have thought something as delicious as guacamole could be so good for you?  Here is our own special Totally Guacamole Recipe so you can whip some up fast for yourself.

And by the way.  I’m not on a crusade here to say eat this for this condition and that for that condition.  I’ll leave that to the health care practitioners.  My goal here is to provide healthy, whole food alternatives for the nutrient-free snacks that line so many of the shelves in the grocery stores.

Click here to license our guacamole stock photos.

 

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National Healthy Snack Month, Day 6 – Sunflower Seeds https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-6-sunflower-seeds/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-6-sunflower-seeds https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-6-sunflower-seeds/#respond Mon, 26 Feb 2018 19:15:49 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=2097 March, National HEALTHY Snack month is when we get ourselves in the habit of reaching for a healthy snack instead of junk food.  It does take some training too.  When […]

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healthy snack, sunflower seeds

March, National HEALTHY Snack month is when we get ourselves in the habit of reaching for a healthy snack instead of junk food.  It does take some training too.  When the body’s hunger signals go off, the impulse is going to be toward the fastest easiest thing to get some fuel.

national healthy snack month
Pin it and help a friend feel better too! National HEALTHY Snack Month

That’s why keeping snacks like sunflower seeds on hand is such a good idea.  The don’t spoil, don’t have to be refrigerated, and are easy to take along.  They come the fastest, easiest thing to cure the munchies.

Sunflower seeds are so rich in many types of essential, and sometimes hard to get, nutrients that they almost qualify as a superfood.  They provide a healthy source of essential fatty acids in the form of linoleic acid. They are also an excellent source of fiber, and amino acids that are the building blocks of proteins, B Vitamins, phytosterols, and more.

Although as a culture we have been led to believe that consuming fat can lead to unwanted weight gain, the opposite is in fact true; consuming healthy fats actually leads to a healthy cardiovascular system, a stable healthy body weight, and reduced levels of body-wide inflammation. Healthy fats like those found in sunflower seeds are actually the building blocks for cell membranes.

Sunflower seeds are also high in Vitamin and are most associated with boosting cardiovascular health thanks to their ability to reduce “bad” LDL cholesterol and to prevent hypertension.  Other positive effects include cancer prevention, less headaches and muscle cramps, improved detoxification, healthy skin, and more.

There you have it.  Which is the better choice?  Sunflower seeds, or that gooey caramel chocolate bar?  (Yes, I know it’s going to take some discipline!)

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National Healthy Snack Month, Day 5 – Pumpkin Seeds https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-5-pumpkin-seeds/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-5-pumpkin-seeds https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-5-pumpkin-seeds/#respond Thu, 22 Feb 2018 03:06:22 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=2067 Our mission to swap out junk food snacks for heathy snacks during National HEALTHY Snack Month continues.  For March 5th we are suggesting you pass by the Snicker’s bar (yeah, […]

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national healthy snack month

Our mission to swap out junk food snacks for heathy snacks during National HEALTHY Snack Month continues.  For March 5th we are suggesting you pass by the Snicker’s bar (yeah, I know how great they taste and the feeling of that fast sugar buzz) and grab a bag of pumpkin seeds instead. I actually had to force myself to do that today while in Trader Joe’s.

pumpkin seeds
Pin it and take the National HEALTHY Snack Month Challenge

Pumpkin seeds were a celebrated food among many Native American tribes, who treasured them both for their dietary and medicinal properties. In South America, the popularity of pumpkin seeds has been traced at least as far back as the Aztec cultures of 1300-1500 AD.

Health Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds

Most natural unprocessed foods provide anti-oxidant support but pumpkin seeds deliver anti-oxidants in a unique way.  For example, they contain vitamin E but unlike many other foods containing vitamin E, they contain it in a wide variety of forms: Alpha-tocopherol, gamma-tocopherol, delta-tocopherol, alpha-tocomonoenol and gamma-tocomonoenol. Pumpkin seeds contain a diverse mixture of antioxidants may provide antioxidant-related properties that are not widely found in food. Pumpkin seeds to be a very good source of the minerals phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, and copper and a good source of the minerals zinc and iron.

Research indicates eating pumpkin seeds can be useful in the prevention or treatment of diabetes.  They are also known for their anti-microbial activity including their anti-fungal and anti-viral properties.

I’ve seen quite a few articles about various health benefits of pumpkin seeds.  I would love to go into them all, but my goal here is just to encourage as many people as I can to take the challenge this March during National Healthy Snack Month and reach for healthy snacks instead of sweets, pastries or greasy snacks.  It doesn’t take much learning on our parts to decide whether the bag of cheese puffs or the bag of pumpkin seeds will do our body more good!

I’ve posted some links below for storage containers that might help you pack along some of these healthy foods.

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National Healthy Snack Month, Day 4, Greek Yogurt https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-4-greek-yogurt/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-4-greek-yogurt https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-4-greek-yogurt/#respond Tue, 20 Feb 2018 05:20:22 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=2054 Greek yogurt is a great snack for National Healthy Snack Month.  It has twice as much protein as other types of yogurt, is rich in bone-building calcium which makes it […]

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Greek yogurt is a great snack for National Healthy Snack Month.  It has twice as much protein as other types of yogurt, is rich in bone-building calcium which makes it an excellent choice for bodybuilders who need all the high quality protein they can get.  

greek yogurt
Pin it and celebrate National Healthy Snack Month with Greek Yogurt

This is good for all of us, not just athletes and bodybuilders.  Get the plain and perk it up with nuts, strawberries or other berries and if you must sweeten it try some cinnamon or organic honey, each of which have their own set of health benefits.

Greek yogurt has quadrupled in production from 2008 – 2013 and an average serving of Greek yogurt can have 12 to 17.3 grams of protein. Greek yogurt manufacturers add a step to drain excess water and lactose out. You get a yogurt with more protein, less sugar, more carbs, and a tart taste.

Protein is one of the three nutrients that provide energy and it transfers oxygen and other substances across cell membranes. Getting the right amount of protein for yourself is important for your immune system, nerves, and fluid balance.

Not only do bodybuilders and athletes need more protein, we need more protein as we age, particularly over age 65. Adding some chia seeds into it can boost the protein even more and add fiber as well.

Greek yogurt also has probiotics that help your gut health.  Without the good bacteria in probiotics, the bad bacteria multiplies and stresses our immune system.  It is also high in calcium for bone health and vitamin D absorption as well as vitamin B-12 which is necessary for healthy nerves.

 

I’ve heard debates about whether yogurt is really good for you or not.  This seems to be the case with most all foods.  But look at it like this.  If I have a choice between Greek yogurt with some strawberries on top, or a bag of greasy corn chips which one is going to make me healthier?

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National Healthy Snack Month, Day Three: Pine Nuts https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-three-pine-nuts/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-three-pine-nuts https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-three-pine-nuts/#respond Mon, 19 Feb 2018 19:09:42 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=2014 A suggestion for day three, March 3rd, of National Healthy Snack Month.  Grab a bag of healthy and delicious pine nuts, aka pignolias.  What could be an easier snack food. […]

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pine nuts

A suggestion for day three, March 3rd, of National Healthy Snack Month.  Grab a bag of healthy and delicious pine nuts, aka pignolias.  What could be an easier snack food.

pine nuts
Pin it and celebrate National Healthy Snack Month

Remember the objective of National Healthy Snack Month is to break old habits and learn just how much easier it is to eat healthy snacks instead!  Talk it up.  Hashtag #NationalHEALTHYsnackMonth

Hailing from Colorado where the mountains are full of pine trees, this is a food I’m quite familiar with.  They aren’t actually nuts.  They are the seeds of pine trees and harvested from the pine cones.  But you don’t have to live around the evergreen trees to find them.  They are in most any store and are delicious raw or roasted.

Health Benefits of Pine Nuts

Pine nuts can help suppress your appetite and thus help you lose weight.  They contain monounsaturated fat, proteins, iron and magnesium which help increase your energy.  Magnesium is a very essential mineral that most American’s are deficient in.

Pine nuts contain a wealth of antioxidants, including vitamins A, B, C, D, K and E, and lutein which is great for helping your vision. The combined nutrients in pine nuts are know to support heart health, reduce cholesterol, and be anti-aging.

I’m not going to get into a detailed dissertation here.  You can read more about the health benefits of pine nuts on Dr. Mercola’s website.

But I do recommend you look at the nutrients you will find in pine nuts and compare them to the nutrients listed on a – insert brand name here – candy bar and decide which one to take with you to work this morning!

Take the National Healthy Snack Month challenge and swap out junk food for healthy snacks each day this March and share it with your friends using the links below.

By the way, pine nuts are great in recipes.  We use pine nuts in our bowtie pasta with creamy basil pesto recipe and I’ve seen them used in salads, soups and more.

I’m also going to recommend some kitchen appliances that will help you make healthy foods.  I’m featuring the VitaMix Bender below.  My brother and his wife have one and swear by it.  They say it is so powerful you can make vegetable juice with it and not lose any of the fiber like you do with juicers and even “cook” soups in it.  It doesn’t have a heating element, but processes the food so fast it heats it.

 

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National Healthy Snack Month, Day 2 – Feta Cheese & Green Olives https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-2-feta-cheese-green-olives/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-2-feta-cheese-green-olives https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-2-feta-cheese-green-olives/#comments Sun, 18 Feb 2018 05:21:35 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=1994 For day two of National Healthy Snack Month, March 2nd, you might want to give this delicious snack of stuffed green olives and feta cheese a try. Yeah, I know […]

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feta cheese and green olives

For day two of National Healthy Snack Month, March 2nd, you might want to give this delicious snack of stuffed green olives and feta cheese a try.

national healthy snack month
Pin it. Feta cheese is a perfect food for National Healthy Snack Month

Yeah, I know it looks anything but healthy.  But both the cheese and the olives are quite good for you.  It is also easy to pack along with you.  Just put some olives and slices of feta cheese into a snack container and take it with you.  A side note, you might want to use glass food storage containers rather than plastic for reasons you have probably heard.

Now, for what I said about this snack actually being good for you.  We’ll start with the green olives.  Olives are packed with antioxidants the play a role in helping to prevent heart disease, stroke, DNA damage and types of cancer.  They are also rich in vitamin E along with antioxidant minerals like selenium and zinc.

I’ve heard olives given a bad rap because they contain fat, but some fats are essential for health.  The fats found in olives is one of those.  Most of the fat in olives, for instance, is oleic acid, a monounsaturated fatty acid linked to reduced blood pressure and cardiovascular disease risk. Olives also contain omega-3-rich alpha-linolenic acid.

As for the cheese, feta cheese is the healthiest cheese there is.  It’s made from goat’s milk or sheep’s milk, is nutrient rich, easier to digest and less allergenic than cow’s milk cheese.  But even as good as it it, this probably isn’t a snack you want to eat every day.

The list of health benefits from eating feta cheese are more like you would expect to find from one of the superfood fruits or vegetables such as strawberries or brussels sprouts.  Here are a few of them:  Helps protect against cancer; supports bone health; boosts the immune system; contains probiotics that help you maintain a healthy gut; helps prevent headaches, protects your eyes and prevents degenerative eye disease and is part of a natural treatment for anemia.

You see what I am saying?  Feta cheese is definitely not a food to put in the same category as those individually wrapped cheese slices made from “cheese food” as it says on the label (whatever that is!).

I urge you to read this article on Dr Axe’s website on the health benefits of feta cheese and this article on Dr. Mercola’s website on the health benefits of olives.

Help your friends feel better.  Talk it up.  Hashtag #NationalHEALTHYsnackMonth

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National Healthy Snack Month, Day 1, Pistachios https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-1-pistachios/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month-day-1-pistachios https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month-day-1-pistachios/#respond Sat, 17 Feb 2018 20:49:29 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=1984 As we covered in our first post about National Healthy Snack Month, the goal here is to condition ourselves to swap out the sticky buns, donuts and other empty calorie […]

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national healthy snack month
Try pistachios for National Healthy Snack Month!

As we covered in our first post about National Healthy Snack Month, the goal here is to condition ourselves to swap out the sticky buns, donuts and other empty calorie snacks for one that are healthier.  

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National Healthy Snack Month – Pistachos

Snack foods that are easy enough for a life on the go and foods that also give you the sustained energy and nutrients you need to keep up the pace!

We decided to go with pistachios as our first suggestion because no snack food is easier to “make” or take with you.  Just grab a bag of these smiling little nuts in the grocery store and keep it with you!  Pistachios have the added advantage of taking a bit of time to eat if you get them in the shells so you can’t over indulge with them the way you could with roasted cashews or similar nuts.

Pistachios are technically a fruit, these edible seeds of the Pistacia vera tree are considered to be quite healthy.  They contain healthy fats and are a good source of protein, fiber and antioxidants yet are fairly low in calories.

They also contain several essential nutrients and have benefits for weight loss, as well as heart and gut health.

Pistachios are very popular in many dishes, including ice cream and desserts, but stick with them straight out of the bag for National Healthy Snack Month.  After all, our goal here is healthy snacks, not an excuse to eat (pistachio) ice cream!

We could go into a long post here about all the health benefits of pistachios, but we will save that for later.  Meanwhile, just trust us, you can’t go wrong eating pistachios.  You will have more energy and fewer pounds if you skip the candy bar March 1st, the first day of National Healthy Snack Month, and munch on some of these instead!

Talk it up and help your friends! Hashtag #NationalHEALTHYsnackMonth

national healthy snack month
A mound of shelled pistachios. National healthy snack month

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National Healthy Snack Month https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=national-healthy-snack-month https://totally-food.com/national-healthy-snack-month/#respond Thu, 15 Feb 2018 18:53:52 +0000 https://totally-food.com/?p=1947 There is no better month for National Healthy Snack Month than March.  It’s spring, the New Year’s resolutions haven’t faded yet and we are thinking new beginnings, better health and […]

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Healthy after school snack
Healthy After School Snack – National Healthy Snack Month

There is no better month for National Healthy Snack Month than March.  It’s spring, the New Year’s resolutions haven’t faded yet and we are thinking new beginnings, better health and more active lifestyles. 

We hope to bring you a post each day of healthy snacks that you can eat “on the go” that will give you to fuel your body needs for the more active and FUN lifestyle you are imagining!

national healthy snack month
Pin National Healthy Snack Month and Check Back Daily for Healthy Snack Ideas

Now here is a little tidbit you didn’t know about National Healthy Snack Month.  We have been writing a lot about the various national food holidays.  More often than not we find the origin of the holiday is unknown.  This time we know exactly where it started. It started right here on Totally-Food!

We started it to fill a void.  As I was looking over the various food holidays that we have posted so far I see corn chips, cherry pie, cream filled brownies, butter crunch candy and lots of them created to push the sales of some corporate interest.  I thought it would make more sense to celebrate a food holiday that was actually good for your health.  Like swapping out the donuts for something a little healthier, like an apple, or some almonds, something that would be easy and give you sustained energy for the mid-day snack.

I searched for healthy snack day and every conceivable variation of that and there isn’t one!  Well there is now.

This may be more important for our children than for ourselves.  According to The Center for Science in the Public Interest: “Serving healthy snacks to children is important to providing good nutrition, supporting lifelong healthy eating habits, and helping to prevent costly and potentially-disabling diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, and obesity.  The reason this is even more important for our children is the part about establishing lifelong good eating habits.

Let’s face it.  Even though schools claim to be getting in on the healthy food and snacks bandwagons, we still find colas and other soft drinks loaded with aspartame or sugar an loads of preservatives alongside candy bars in school vending machines.  And the “healthiest” of the foods provided there have often had their natural nutrients swapped out for synthetic substitutes.

None of what I’m saying here about the children is just for kids.  It applies even more so to us. This is one of the easiest things we can do to improve our health and well being and keep ourselves out of the doctors office.  Completely natural foods are actually the most convenient of all snack foods.  It takes less time to rinse an apple than to unwrap a candy bar!

national healthy snack month
How much better would you feel if you swapped out the donuts for the healthy snack above?

How do you celebrate National Healthy Snack Month?  It’s simple.  Just make a vow to swap out the candy bars, donuts, pastries and colas for a healthier alternative each day in March.  I’m betting you will keep doing it from that point on.  Stop back here often and click on our National Healthy Snack Month link if you need some fresh ideas of what to put in your snack-on-the-go-bag.

We are making this announcement now on February 15th to start raising awareness for National Healthy Snack Month and beginning March 1st we will post a healthy snack idea each day for the month.  It’s our hope that other food bloggers will join in (we all love to blog about healthy foods, don’t we?) and make National Healthy Snack Month a movement that will help change our eating habits and the health of mankind for the better!  Don’t forget to tell people you heard it here first, and check back each day for the next healthy snack idea.

Hashtag #NationalHEALTHYsnackMonth

Oh, and post a comment on what your favorite healthy snack is!

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