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Healthy Snack Ideas For Older Adults

The more we learn about nutrition, the more we understand the important role it plays in aging well. Eating a well-balanced diet means consuming meals rich in fruits, vegetables, lean protein, whole grains, and low-fat dairy. It also means reducing processed foods and sugary treats.

That combination gives your body the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients it needs to fight off diseases. High blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and some forms of cancer have been linked to a poor diet.

USDA MyPlate

Myplate GreenThe USDA’s MyPlate program was designed to help older adults develop meal plans that meet their unique nutritional needs. Seniors have different dietary needs, such as increased amounts of vitamin D and vitamin B, than younger adults.

For many seniors, two healthy snacks per day help stabilize blood sugar between meals (which helps prevent overeating) and maintain energy levels. While they may be more convenient, store-bought snacks are often high in sodium, fat, sugar, and preservatives. A healthier option is to prepare your own snacks and keep them on hand at home or in a cooler when you travel.

 Ideas

Here are a few snacks that won’t compromise your commitment to living a healthy lifestyle as you grow older:

  1. Baked apple chips sprinkled with cinnamon
  2. Frozen grapes or a frozen banana
  3. Hummus with carrots and cucumber slices
  4. Greek yogurt with peach slices or fresh berries
  5. A handful of roasted almonds or heart-healthy walnuts
  6. Glass of unsweetened almond or cashew milk
  7. Cherry tomatoes with mozzarella cheese
  8. Whole-grain popcorn (skip the salt and butter!)
  9. Apple slices and almond butter or natural peanut butter
  10. Whole-grain crackers topped with canned tuna
  11. Bowl of oatmeal topped with blueberries
  12. Black bean dip with veggie stick dippers
  13. Hard-cooked egg
  14. Avocado on whole-wheat toast
  15. Melon with low-fat cottage cheese
  16. Sliced tomato with feta cheese and a drizzle of olive oil
  17. Whole-grain toast with low-fat cream cheese and raspberries
  18. Pita bread with black beans
  19. Homemade baked sweet potato chips
  20. Celery with nut butter and raisins
  21. Salsa with baked tortilla chips
  22. Edamame seasoned with sesame oil
  23. Turkey slices
  24. Kale chips
  25. Unsweetened almond milk and fruit smoothie
  26. Marinated artichoke hearts
  27. Baked banana chips
  28. Orange slices dipped in dark chocolate
  29. Bell pepper with guacamole
  30. Cottage cheese sprinkled with flax seed and cinnamon

Other Considerations

It’s also important to stay hydrated. Most physicians recommend patients try to drink eight to 10 glasses of water each day. That can keep you feeling full and avoid overeating.

If you choose healthy, whole-food snack options, they can help keep you full throughout the day and limit your cravings for unhealthy foods. Choosing delicious treats that are packed with nutrients, vitamins, and minerals will fuel your body and keep your blood sugar levels steady. Healthy nutrition is a part of everyday life!

Sources
• ChooseMyPlate, choosemyplate.gov
• U.S. Department of Agriculture, USDA.gov

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Healthy Snacks

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Email: nfs@uwyo.edu

Extension Educators:
Shelley Balls – (307) 885-3132
Denise Smith – (307) 334-3534
Vicki Hayman – (307) 746-3531

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Contact Our Experts

Email: nfs@uwyo.edu

Extension Educators:
Shelley Balls – (307) 885-3132
Denise Smith – (307) 334-3534
Vicki Hayman – (307) 746-3531

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Issued in furtherance of extension work, acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Kelly Crane, Director, University of Wyoming Extension, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Wyoming Extension, University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyoming 82071.

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