February is National Snack Food Month but that doesn’t mean you have to give up on your low-sugar diet. Instead, learn which snack foods to avoid and which you can enjoy without overdoing it on your sugar intake. Swap your sweet tooth for savory, and you’ll be snacking healthier in no time.
The Highest Sugar Snacks (in no particular order)
- Low-fat yogurt frequently has added sugar in the form of added fruit and flavor to make up for the lack of fat. Buy plain whole fat yogurt to cut sugar intake.
- Fruit juice can seem like the perfect beverage, but it has lots of sugar, none of the fiber, and little of the nutrition of actual fruit.
- Chocolate milk may be refreshing, but it packs a double sugar whammy because dairy is naturally sweet and the addition of chocolate syrup ups the ante.
- Granola is often thought of as healthy, but it’s actually quite high in fat and sugar. It is frequently found to have added sugar in the candies and chocolate chips that are among the ingredients.
- Protein bars may have a lot of protein, but they often have just as much, if not more, sugar to make them palatable.
- Premade soup often has extra sugar and salt to make it taste better than homemade.
- Canned fruit not only contains naturally sweet fruit, but it is also soaking in high-sugar corn syrup.
- Breakfast cereal is convenient for both breakfast and a snack but often has a lot of added sugar – especially those cereals marketed to kids.
The Lowest Sugar Snacks (in no particular order)
- Quinoa puffs contain no additional sugar and can be used as a replacement for granola, thanks to the crispy texture. The puffs can be seasoned and enjoyed as a snack mix or you can find premade mixtures.
- Kind bars contain much less sugar than candy bars, if you have a sweet tooth to satisfy.
- Snack nuts are a healthier way to enjoy crunch and contain no sugar unless they are sweetened, so read labels carefully.
- Nut butter and celery are a crispy and refreshing snack that has health benefits rather than detriments, like spiking your blood sugar.
- Hummus and veggies are another good way to enjoy a dip without additional sugar but plenty of satisfying fiber.
- Chia pudding has a smooth texture like yogurt but with less sugar, especially if made with unsweetened almond milk instead of dairy milk. You can add a bit of maple syrup or honey and it will still have considerably less sugar than other snack foods.
- Roasted chickpeas can be sweet or savory and pack a nice crunch to keep you satisfied.
- Jerky, especially bison, is a lean protein-rich snack. Some jerky does contain additional sugar, so be sure to read labels and look for a jerky that is high in protein but low in sugar.