My family is extremely busy with sports. We are at baseball practice nightly and tournaments every weekend. What are some easy, nutritious snack ideas for us (portable and on-the-go)?

My brothers and I were all in high school sports at the same time. So, my mother struggled with figuring out what to feed us the same way you are! Healthy snacks should contain a mixture of three things: protein, healthy fat, and carbohydrate. When looking for healthy snacks, I advise my clients to steer clear of the “snack” food aisle and peruse the perimeter! The snack aisle contains oodles of potato chips, cheese curls, nacho chips, and buttery popcorn options. It is true…amongst some of these high fat/salty snacks are baked and low sodium options but even these are still not at the top of my list of healthy snacks. There are many healthier options along the outside of the grocery store. A great snack idea is to think “finger foods”. When on the go, it is easiest to eat with our hands so provide a variety of options to pair together such as: Low fat string cheese and trail mix, sliced 2% cheese wrapped around low sodium lunch meat paired with dried fruit, a handful of almonds and a pear, sliced apples dipped in a small amount of peanut butter. I am also a huge fan of hummus! This is a healthy and tasty bean-based snack. It pairs well with carrots, whole wheat pita chips, or rice cakes. You could always utilize smoothies also. Get a great portable cooler and bring out the blender! Combine a low sugar fruit juice (Healthy Balance from Old Orchard), ½ a banana, plain yogurt, and ice for a tasty portable treat (add Kiefer for extra protein!). If you have the cooler ready to go, pack protein! Your kids might enjoy a ½ cup of low fat cottage cheese (or Greek yogurt) topped with blueberries and chia seeds. Hard boiled eggs (just the egg whites) or tuna fish mix up well with a little bit of light mayonnaise and can be placed inside half of a whole grain pita. If you are really thinking “easy”, protein bars may be the way to go. Take some time at the store and review the labels. Protein bars used as snacks should contain ~150-200 calories and if they are meant to serve more of a “small meal” purpose, then try to aim for 250-300 calories. Make sure the bars contain some protein and fiber too! Good luck!

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