On The Table

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Why the Snack Food Persona is Due for a Makeover

It's time for us to give snack food a healthier image.

Why the Snack Food Persona is Due for a Makeover

While February may be all hearts, roses, and sugar-coated sweet treats, February is not only the month for love, but the month of snack food.

February is National Snack Food Month, which means people will have one more reason to indulge in foods that may not be the healthiest.

This is what most of us think of when it comes to snack food: chips, cookies, doughnuts, candy bars, soda, ice cream, sugar candy, and the list goes on and on…

When you hear someone say, “would you like a snack?” chances are, you would be pretty disappointed if they handed you a handful of carrots and celery and told you to enjoy.

With recent health issues on the rise, (like rising statistics of obese and overweight Americans), it may not be a bad idea for us to change our concept of snacking.

What’s in the “Snack” Name?

The concept of eating between meals wouldn’t be complete without a name attached to it…

It’s no wonder snacking comes easy to most of us, because that is one of the root meanings of the word. The word “snack” in Australian slang actually means, “something easily done.”

The original meaning behind the word “snack” means to snap or bite. The word itself was believed to have originated in the 14th century, in middle Europe, during a period of time where gluttony was considered royal, and eating between meals was nothing out of the norm.

With the word “snack” taking its place in food history, the world has caught on over the years, and the popularity of snacking has grown over the centuries, especially in this modern era.

How Popular Has “Snacking” Become?

The most popular snack choice by far is potato chips, with sales at $7.2 million in 2009--higher than any other snack food.

This is a lot of bags of potato chips sold, and this is one of the many reasons why obesity rates have climbed to unbelievable statistics in recent years.

With a majority of our population being either overweight or obese, it is now more crucial than ever to change the foods we prefer for “snacks.”

Why We Should Look Toward the Healthy Side…

One of the reasons why junk food is so popular is because it is cheap to produce, which makes it cheap and easily available for purchase.

Eating healthy is more expensive, but the long-term health benefits outweigh the monetary cost in the long run.

Instead of reaching for your favorite candy bar, reach for a protein snack instead. Many health food stores sell healthy snacks that are packed with essential nutrition, but still contain some of the ingredients you love, like chocolate.

High-protein snacks like these can help curb your food cravings which make you less likely to reach for snack foods that are high in sugar for a quick energy boost.

If chips are your favorite snack food, you can still have them, just in a healthier form.

There are many health food companies out there who sell protein chip snacks that cut out all of the other unhealthy ingredients and fillers that give many of us unwanted fat and calories.

Many of these chips are made with soy protein, and are made with natural ingredients for a variety of flavors including nacho cheese and lemon garlic.

February may be National Snack Food Month, but it doesn’t mean you have to eat cookies and chips for 28 days straight.

By doing a little research, you can find places to buy healthy snacks that won’t jeopardize your health in between meals.

BistroMD has your healthy snack time covered, by offering you a variety of snacks for you to enjoy in between your physician-designed, chef prepared meals.