Like everybody else on the entire planet, I like to eat food when I am hungry. Unfortunately, when you are trying to become more fit (fitten up? be more fitter??), sometimes it is hard to come up with something to snack on that is good, and also won't totally blow your calories for the day so you have to have miso soup and an old hunk of celery for dinner.
Obviously, the best, healthiest, and lowest calorie option would probably be some vegetables or a piece of fruit or something, but that suuuuuuucks. You want something a little snackier than that sometimes, right? So, today I am going to show y'all some of my favorite light snacks! Then, in the comments (or by email), you can tell me what you like. I'm not the final word on stuff, I want some low-cal food ideas, too.
NIBBLY STUFF YOU CAN EAT THAT DOESN'T FEEL LIKE PUNISHMENT!!
DIP: I love dip. I want to put dip on everything in the world. Dip, though, has a million trillion calories and a fuckton of fat in it, especially if you eat as much dip as I do when I want to eat dip. This is problematic, because I am not the most veggie-loving person in the world, and dip really lubricates 'em so I can slide them down my gullet more efficiently.
Enter Fage 0% Greek Yogurt. (You prob should get it at the grocery, but that's what it looks like haha.)
You can take a big tub of this shit, and put powdered dip mix in it. Ranch dip. French onion dip. Whatever. You can also pull out your dill dip recipe and replace all the fatty dairy stuff like sour cream and mayo and stuff with the yogurt. No problem. I am sure you can use regular yogurt, but it would probably be runny and not good. The greek yogurt is PERFECT for dip because it is so thick. It also comes in a great tub with a lid, so you mix it right in there and put that cocksucker in the fridge, and you only dirtied a spoon making it.
One cup of Fage Greek Yogurt has 130 calories, plus the negligible amount of calories from your herbs and all that in the dip mix. I can't even eat a whole cup of dip, it's galling. So, have a half or three-quarters cup, and a trough of vegetables, and you're filled up for under 200 calories. I have this shit with lunch almost every day. DIP!
CRISPBREAD: So, you have some hummus, or some tuna or crab salad, and you want to scoop it up with something that is crunchy and cracker-like, but you have no self control around crackers. Because of this, you have to live your life like you're in a Sarah McLaughlin dog commercial, only instead of being sad about being an abused dog about to be put down, you're sad because you're about to get cracker-fat. (The same song will play if you are an abused dog or cracker-fat, don't worry.)
Now, imagine you can have some cracker things that are 12 calories for a cracker the size of a playing card... and that cracker has, like, 5 grams of fiber, so if you have a few with lunch, you're gonna crap your brains out. IT'S LIKE A DREAM! No, it's not... it's GG Bran Crispbread, the cracker thing that isn't THAT good, but it's certainly good enough. Eat like 5 of them or something! Eat twice that, pig the fuck out, then crap all day long tomorrow. They're kinda bland, but the stuff you're dipping (DIP) is gonna be good, so who cares. What matters is that they are crunchy and act like a cracker replacement, and they are good for you.
They should let me make a commercial for them. I already came up with a slogan, "GG Bran Crispbread....They're Good Enough!"
ICE CREAM: Let's say you wake up one morning, and it is a great day to be your chronic depression. The depression is in full frolic, and all you want to do is the bare minimum to keep up the appearance of not being a morbid puddle on the ground. You get out of bed, change into different yoga pants, brush your teeth and then it's quitting time! Time to eat ice cream on the couch and watch Antiques Roadshow for the next 14 hours!!
Wouldn't it be great if you could sit there and eat the whole pint of ice cream, and not erase every calorie you burnt doing Sweatin' to the Oldies when you you were briefly deluded into thinking you could be one of those sporty people??? WELL! Have some Arctic Zero!
Arctic Zero is like a protein shake made into ice cream. It doesn't have a bunch of artificial sweeteners in it, and it even has some fiber. OH, AND IT IS ALSO 150 CALORIES FOR THE WHOLE ENTIRE PINT. Get the chocolate-peanutbutter flavor, though, because that one has a much nicer mouthfeel. The other ones are a little icy-textured. It's pretty good, and if you remember that it is 150 for the whole thing, it suddenly is the best ice cream ever. If you have the recommended serving size, it's only 37 calories or something. I get more calories than that when I breathe too long in the kitchen when Drew is cooking himself some real food.
SHIRATAKI NOODLES: 40 calories for 8 ounces of noodles! They are weird noodles, and a lot of people hate them, but I can't live without having pasta constantly. So, instead of eating pasta every day with a side of self-loathing, I have shirataki most of the time, and really-real, awesome pasta whenever I make good homemade sauce or something that is worth having the real thing. Like I said, a lot of people don't like it, but I like it alright. It is better in asian-style sauces, and not that great in tomato sauces (but I don't much care, the giant bowl of noodles for 40 calories is pretty persuasive.) I've even made tuna noodle stuff, and doctored it up to make a good-enough version of just about any pasta dish I get a hankering for.
House Foods Shirataki Noodles!
The secret to getting them to taste good is this: Get the thinner noodles (either spaghetti or angel hair)...drain them in a colander...then, dump a ton (like, seriously, a half cup or something) of salt on the noodles in the colander, scrub the salt around in them for a minute, and let them sit in the colander in the sink while you get the rest of your ingredients together. Then, come back and rinse the salt all the way out and drain/squish out as much water as you can. This gets rid of any weird taste people say they have, and it seems to improve the texture a little, too. Mainly it gets rid of the taste of the water they are packed in.
M&Ms: Let's be real here. I don't know about y'all, but I can't stay on a diet if I am never going to be allowed to have anything good. It's much better to let yourself eat anything you want, and just be mindful of how much you are eating.
If I have a day when I've eaten all my fruits and vegetables and been generally healthy, and did a little workout or something, I might have some M&Ms. Specifically, I will have a regular size (not king size) bag of Pretzel M&Ms. Did you know that a whole bag of those only has 150 calories? I didn't, until I was going to get some Rocher (my previous go-to candy treat), and picked up a bag and read the label. That's not bad. Sure, it's sugar and flour and food coloring, but you get that satisfying frisson of buying candy for the hell of it, with minimum damage to your macros for the day. YEAH, I DON'T GIVE A FUCK. I'M GONNA BUY THAT CANDY. DEAL WITH IT.
As you can see, I basically just want to eat hors d'oeuvres and pasta and dessert. The foods I listed are the foods I crutch along on, that help me keep from overeating. Aside from that stuff, and a couple other crutch-type foods, I usually just eat meat and produce and rice. My family is little, and my kid only eats Spaghettios and hummus, so we usually just make a few pounds of chicken in the oven, make brown rice in the cooker, and eat leftovers for dinner all week. Cooking for just a couple people is a pain, so we got it streamlined. We warm it up and add produce or condiments or turn the leftover meat into tacos, and blah blah blah. Then, we go get pho once or twice a week, and that's it! In the winter, we might also make a big pot of onion soup or something to keep in the fridge. Boring as hell!
Basically, I have to keep a tight rein on my shit because I work from home, on the computer, and that burns zero calories ever. Seriously, I think my BMR is 1100 calories or something, I'm like a sloth. I've always been a little fluffy, but nothing that bothered me. When I got pregnant, I was a size 8-10, but then I got horribly sick and got preeclampsia, and was gaining 15 pounds of water weight a week for the last couple months (I know it was all water because I couldn't eat anything, and it was all in the pitting edema in my legs). When I got out of the hospital, I weighed two (2) hundred (00) eighty (+80) pounds. 280. I've lost more than 100 pounds since then, and am wearing a 12-14, and that's fine with me. But it's a lot of work! This post might have been boring to you, but a lot of people email me about this stuff. I watch my food even on days I don't get gussied up and do my face and hair and all that, so it's a more major hobby of mine than the makeup stuff, I guess.
One last thing... last time I mentioned dieting, I got mail from people (not a lot, like 2) who were hella ticked that I had the audacity to talk about dieting, and tried to tell me off for being hateful to fat people. Obviously, they had me confused for someone who gives a fuck about people bitching at me, or who gives a fuck about what size other people are. I am neither, and there are actually about 9000 other things on the list of things I don't give a fuck about (if you were wondering.) I like to go to the Nordstrom semi-annual sale and be able to buy stuff. I don't have the attention span to find clothes I like in plus-sizes. Also, I have chronic depression, and being overweight and not exercising makes my depression more pit-like, and makes me wish I was dead. THAT'S IT, THAT'S MY MOTIVATION. I'm not out to body-shame people, or to appraise people's value based on their BMI, or trigger eating disorders or whatever the hell else people want to accuse me of. I'm not going to feel bad about doing what I gotta do to take care of myself, and I don't think it is appropriate that someone would read something like this and extrapolate that it is some kind of hate-screed. I just thought that I would get that out of the way so people can proactively can it, in case somebody feels like bitching at me about any of that. JUST GETTING THAT OUT OF THE WAY. SAVE EVERYONE SOME TIME!! It's ludicrous that I should even have to include this in my post.
In the comments (or via email), tell me what kind of light snacks you like. I actually would very much like to get more ideas for super-easy, healthy-ish snacks/convenience meals you like. If I get a bunch of good suggestions, I will make another blog post so everyone will have the whole list in digest form, so it is easier to read! Yay! BFFs!!!