Snacking often gets a bad rap and it shouldn’t. It’s been proven that snacking boosts metabolism, keeps mood levels stable, helps people eat less at meal times and keeps cravings at bay. Nutrient-dense snacking during a family vacation not only deters hunger from hampering an itinerary, it also can allow for quicker adjustment to a new time zone—when done properly.

As we age, snacking needs to done with care. My 40s metabolism has kicked in and I only half of a thyroid which seems to have slowed my metabolism down. I need to get smarter about snacking and have a deeper appreciation for pre-packaged healthy foods like Shine Organics that are already portioned and packed with vitamins.

These tips for healthy snacking serve as good reminders for those, like me, who are striving to be more mindful about it.

Snack Deliberately

Think about the day’s itinerary in advance and bring a snack if the time between meals is longer than usual. Or, if you’re going to be more active than normal… put a snack in your handbag to avoid purchasing something far less nutritious or becoming irritable.

Always Maintain Portion Control

Single-serve snacks along with those measured out in advance ensure that calorie intake is regulated. Eat from a big bag of snacks—even if it’s some kind of healthy-ish unbuttered popcorn—because it’s far too easy to overeat when it’s difficult to measure exactly how much you’re actually taking from the bag.

UC San Diego Student Health maintains a great list of snacks that are 200 calories or less.

Snack Only when Hungry

It’s taken a while for me to learn the difference between being physically hungry and bored enough to eat something. When that peckish, fidgety hunger strikes, I walk the dog or get up and do something to distract my mind from the pantry.

(The only time I snack when not hungry the day after a long haul flight when I’m trying to adjust my appetite to a new time zone. Waking up hungry in the middle of the night, when you’d normally be having lunch, is a big contributor to jet lag.)

Shine Organics pouches are a blend of organic fruits, veggies and micronutrients that slip into your handbag

Tune In

Multitaskers (like me) tend not to snack efficiently because we’re so busy juggling tasks that we tune out when snacking. This means we don’t always register mentally that we just ate something and can lose track of portion size if sitting in front of say a bowl of trail mix.

Eating is meant to be enjoyed so take a moment to pause for a minute to refuel. People who eat without distraction feel more satisfied and eat less later in the day, according to a study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition referenced by Eating Well.

Use Snacks to Supplement

Maybe you ran out the door after a bowl of cereal and could use some extra protein. Perhaps lunch was carb-heavy so a light green salad or fruit are in order later. Use snacks as an opportunity to supplement whatever is missing from the day’s diet.

Chew Longer

Apparently, studies have shown that people who chew 30 seconds or longer before swallowing, eat less in a day. While it sounds a bit labor-intensive, this could tune your mind into what exactly you’re snacking on, as mentioned above. I just say, eat more slowly and chew a bit longer than you otherwise would.

Keep Healthy Snacks in Sight

Don’t let your mind drift off into the freezer where ice cream and who only knows what else is in there. Keep a fruit bowl on the kitchen island. Apparently, there is research that says people who have a fruit bowl exposed weigh 8 pounds less than those who don’t. (On the flip side, the same article mentions that women who have a cereal in sight average 21 pounds heavier). When on the go, this means keeping a healthy snack in your handbag.

Drink Naturally Flavored Water

Perhaps it’s psychosomatic but it doesn’t really matter. Adding fruit and/or herbs to water (lemon water, lime water, cucumber water) not only makes it more flavorful but tends to keep me full. You might be surprised by how much more satisfied you feel and it does help mitigate snacking due to boredom. I ask for a side of lemon in restaurants, in hotels and even on the plane. Try it alone or in conjunction with a snack.

Snack with Shine Organics

Tips for healthy snacking include portion controlled snacks like Shine Organics!

These adult snacking pouches are designed for adult taste buds in mind with a special blend of organic fruits and vegetables, featuring additional purposeful ingredients—which happen to be organic and gluten-free—to feed the moment. I like them as a solution because you can toss on in your handbag and eat it if hungry and it won’t spoil should you decide to save it for later.

I’m packing a box to take to Barcelona in a few weeks when I’ll need easy snacks to carry in my handbag for preventing jet lag. The four flavors include:

  • PURIFY: Apple, Guava, Kale, Strawberry, Parsley, Chia
  • ELEVATE: Banana, Carrot, Mango, Orange, Wheatgrass, Turmeric, Chia
  • REVIVE: Pear, Celery, Coconut, Lime, Green Tea, Chia
  • CALM: Banana, Pumpkin, Coconut, Blackberry, Vanilla, Passion Flower, Chia

Shine Organics pouches have 70 – 130 calories each and are available at Target and other select grocers nationwide with a suggested retail price of $5.99 for a 4-pack and $1.69 for singles of 4.22 oz. pouches.

They’re also very tasty. I’d rather have one of these than drink a green juice.

Learn how to maximize snacking with tips for timing and what to eat.

Be sure to follow Shine Organics on social media here:


  • #timetoshine
  • #CALM

Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide, like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai, that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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  1. I always carry almonds in my purse. That way if my kids are hungry, we have a healthy snack readily available.

  2. I like to keep my fruit cut up and ready to go so I will be more likely to grab a healthy snack when I’m on the go instead of chips.

  3. my favorite healthy snack tip is to slice a banana lengthwise and spread a tablespoon of peanut butter on each half. eat both or share.

  4. I prepack snacks on sundays for the week into pre measured single serve baggies! this helps prevent overeating and healthy snack habits!!

  5. My best healthy snacking tip is to always have a protein with any carb snack I have. It keeps you full longer than carbs alone.

  6. I like to have a snack between meals so I’m not so hungry at meal time. My favorite snacks are a small yogurt,carrots, blueberries and other great foods that are in season.

  7. As long as I have healthy snacks like fruit or veggies easily available, then I make better snacking choices. Also, before reaching for a snack, I always drink a glass of water first to see if that appeases the craving.

  8. My best advice is to let your body have time to digest between snacks and meals – even healthy snacks too often aren’t great for your body.

  9. My best tip is after trying to distract yourself, drinking water, etc. if all else fails and you are having a craving. Find a way to satisfy it without completely blowing your diet. If you allow yourself little rewards it will help you in the long run

  10. I’ve found after cutting out junk food, nutritious snacks start tasting just as good as junk food ever did.

  11. The best snack is fruits and veggies. and its easier when you buy the snacks before you get hungry.

  12. I like low calorie no sugar or preservative snacks that are still a treat to eat that I like, I don’t like forcing myself to eat food I don’t have a taste for. also you cant go wrong with fruits and veges.

  13. Most people think that they need to eat three meals a day and snack too. That’s a big reason why people are overweight. I don’t think that snacks are a big deal. Eat when you’re hungry. Eat what you want. Just in moderation.

  14. We love snacking on sliced cucumbers, with tomatoes, we also add nuts and often toss in some blueberries

  15. My tip is: if it’s not in the house you won’t indulge in it! So we don’t buy big bags of chips, cookies etc. for home. We get those kinds of snacks as an occasional treat in small sizes like from fast food places or for outings like picnics.

  16. I find that drinking a lot of water helps curb the urge to snack. And, only keep healthy snacks in the house if you do snack.

  17. I love making healthy soups, salads, and dips to get extra veggies into my diet. I love legumes because they have a lot of protein and fiber.

  18. I don’t bring junk food into the house. If it isn’t easily available you aren’t as like likely to go searching for it.

  19. Have a plan…bring a healthy snack like fruit or nuts. Otherwise you’ll be without a good option to snack on.

  20. I love bringing dried fruit for healthy snacking. You can make it yourself, or you can find them in pretty much any store, in any and all varieties! Apparently not too many people in my area are into them, because they always seem to get price cuts around here, so it’s pretty easy to stack up on bags and bags of them 😉 Major plus is, my toddler loves them as well 😉

  21. Make healthy snacking fun and a treat. Lead by example so your children learn early that healthy eating is not only necessary and beneficial, but enjoyable.

  22. Cut up carrots and celery, wash them and put them in containers in the fridge so it is easy to reach for as a snack.

  23. My snacking tip is to leave easy and portable fruits and veggies on hand including bananas, a bag of baby carrots, an apple, etc. Maybe even some peanut butter to go with an apple for some protein and healthy fat to keep you satisfied a bit longer.