The new year is only a couple weeks old, which means you’re probably still trying your damnedest to follow resolutions you set in the name of a “new you.” If certain cravings for chips, chocolate, and candy are making certain intentions difficult, these healthy snack alternatives might be just what you need.
The possibilities for New Year’s resolutions are endless—you may want to be more financially responsible this year, make more time to travel, finally quit that job you’ve been miserable at, try new cooking projects, or carve out more time to reconnect with old friends—but the most common resolution by far is always food-related.
People really kick themselves after all the holiday eating and vow they’re going to eat better and follow stricter diets. But if they’re so adamant in January, how do so many people fall off the wagon by February?
Where most people go wrong is attempting a total overhaul of their diet all at once. They give up the chips cold turkey and then find themselves giving into cravings by binge-eating their favorite snacks again. If this applies to you, fear not; there is a way around this!
If you swap out your favorite snacks for healthier options with similar flavor profiles, you’re much more likely to stick to your resolutions this year. Let’s start by finding you a healthy alternative to all your faves.
For a Salty Snack Fix
I hate to admit it, but I’m a sucker for a salty snack. I constantly crave salt, and nothing makes me happier than sitting with a finished bag of chips or pretzels and just eating the leftover salt off my fingers. But salty snacks like potato chips are chock-full of calories, making them a pretty unhealthy option. If you’re anything like me and can’t give up the salt without a fight, ditch the chips and start eating edamame instead! That salty, snow pea-looking veggie they give you as a starter at most sushi restaurants is great when roasted and salted, and despite the sodium, it’s a snack high in antioxidants and soy protein, plus fiber and vitamin K. Who says you have to give up your salt fix? These small bags of crunchy edamame snacks are perfect for stashing in your desk at work.Buy Now
For A Chocolate Craving
Especially coming off the holiday season, it’s so easy to succumb to sweets. There are about 3 boxes of cookies in my office right now, and I stop by a few times a day. Instead of going for the cookies, mini cupcakes, or Hershey kisses, invest in these dark chocolate covered chickpeas. They’re crunchy, semi-sweet and, even though you wouldn’t think to put chickpeas with chocolate, they’re downright delicious. Plus, while you’re getting your chocolate fix, you’re also getting a protein and fiber boost. Can’t say that for M&Ms.Buy Now
For Chewy Candy Fans
A lot of people keep chewy candies like gummy bears or Swedish Fish in their desks at work, both because it’s something sweet to munch on and because the crazy amounts of sugar are a good kick in the pants when you hit that 3 p.m. wall. However, those candies are terrible for your teeth and can make you crash once the sugar high wears off. If you like fruity and chewy candies like Swedish Fish, try these Smart Sweets fish. They’re high in fiber, low in sugar, and vegan, making them quite possibly the first healthy candy I’ve ever heard of. Or you could go back to nature and try dried fruit.Buy Now
For That Ice Cream Itch
Every year, someone I know says they’re going to give up ice cream. This is an admirable goal, but ice cream comes in so many shapes and sizes (and amazing flavors) that it’s tough to kick the stuff for good! And quitting cold turkey makes you want it even more, so you need to find an easier way. That’s why I will recommend Halo Top ice cream until the day I die. Halo Top comes in SO many fun flavors, so you’ll definitely find a way to get your fix, whether you’re a cookie dough devotee, fruity fan, or more adventurous ice cream eater (in which case, Peanut Butter and Jelly is a good place to start).
For Sugary Cereal Stans
When you eat cereal every day for breakfast, it’s easy to pick the sugary ones just because they taste so much better. I personally am on a Lucky Charms kick right now and, while they are amazing, it can’t be the healthiest thing in the world to eat marshmallows every morning. If your vice is frosted, sweet cereals, you can still enjoy those on your quest to eat better! Magic Spoon is a brand of low-carb cereals just like those you used to eat in your childhood, only they’re sugar-free, gluten-free, and high in protein. That makes for a much better start to your day and a way less guilty conscience. Read our Magic Spoon review for more info.Buy Now
When you’re ready to branch out even farther, explore some of the most interesting healthy snacks to buy (mushroom jerky, anyone?), and even more plant-based junk food to keep your cravings satisfied in a healthier way.
Header image courtesy of Smart Sweets/Target