Cookies are just the best, aren’t they? There’s so much goodness wrapped up in those little round bundles of joy, and what’s more…cookies are so cheap! The trouble of course is that virtually nothing within a typical cookie is good for you at all, and their cheapness and ubiquitous nature in all stores makes them a bit of a menace to good health.
If you want to cut down on your sugar intake, then cutting out these seemingly small and harmless items is a great way to start. But what can you replace them with? What healthy snack alternatives are there?
Option 1: Veggie Crackers
First, raw veggie crackers are a health alternative that’s also pretty hard to resist. You’d never expect something that’s essentially squished and dried fruits and vegetables could create such a moreish (and invariably gluten-free) alternative, but it does. Veggie crackers offer the bite that replaces that moreish mouth-feel you get with cookies.
One of the biggest advantages of veggie crackers is that they come in so many different flavours and styles. Since the fruits and vegetables themselves make up the main constituent ingredient, the variety of tastes and combinations is more potent because it’s not dominated by any generic biscuit taste.
Option 2: Fresh Fruit
This one may seem obvious, but it has to be said. Fruit converts those processed sugars you crave into equally tasty natural sugars and flavours that can satisfy a sweet tooth while also packing a vitamin and mineral kick that no cookie could possibly match. Helpings of fresh fruit eaten daily can also go a long way to ensuring better heart health, too.
Most fruit is also convenient enough to carry in your work bag without getting messy. You can store it in a fridge at work, or even just on your desk so long as you’re eating it the same day or within a day.
Option 3: Popcorn
Don’t get too excited, because we’re not going to be suggesting caramel-coated or butter-covered popcorn here. If your preferred cookies are more savoury like salted crackers or similar, then replacing that salt and savoury craving with lightly salted plain popcorn can be a great calorie reducer.
Avoiding those sugar-rich toppings is important, as is steering clear or pre-packed microwave popcorn, which often features other additives which are far from a healthy alternative. Air-popped popcorn is the best type, and you should keep any added salt light. A 30-gram serving of such popcorn is typically a little over 100 calories, which isn’t bad at all as a snack goes.
Option 4: Edamame
Edamame is a fancy name for what are actually immature soybeans. OK, the real name doesn’t sound very appetising, but you’ll actually struggle to find a better-tasting natural snack. If popcorn isn’t your thing but you still have that salt craving, edamame is the way to go. They’re high in fiber, as well as vitamin K and folate. A serving of 155 grams will come to under 200 calories (usually around 190).
Option 5: Trail Mix
Mixed nuts and dried fruit in a homemade trail mix is another ideal snack for those who like to have something at their desk that they can munch on slowly through the day. If you ever treat cookies as that kind of tool to “stave off” hunger through the day, then trail mix is the perfect alternative. Nuts are a good source of antioxidants, as well as other nutrients that help to improve control of your blood sugar.
Whatever your choice of cookie alternative, remember to seek the ideal common factors: low in sugar, high in natural ingredient content, high in nutrients!