From the maintenance of the blood sugar level to a satisfactory level before your next meal, you cannot measure the significance of a healthy snack in your life. Eating oil-free and healthy snacks in between the meals will not only assist in keeping your hunger at bay but also stops you from excessive eating.
But unfortunately, due to the massive number of junk foods and unhealthy diets that have recently popped up, Indian snacks have gained a lot of negative publicity in the world. When someone thinks of Indian snacks, they can only imagine onion kachoris, hot samosas, Pani puri, or gol gappa to your mind. But this is not the case because there are numerous alternatives to select from the Indian snacks and are also full of nutritional values.
Why is it significant to consume Snacks in between the meals?
According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, healthy snacking should always be a unique part of the healthy eating plan. They always suggest consuming snacks long before and shortly after the meals.
When you are a working professional, an athlete, a high school student, or a stay-at-home parent, you can get immense benefits from healthy snacking. Now, let us take a quick look into some of the best benefits of consuming healthy snacks in between meals.
Efficient Weight Control
Selecting a healthy Indian snack will assist you in avoiding extreme hunger. You can recall those times when you have to wait for the last minute to have a quick bite of your meal while you are busy working at an office. In this way, you might end up eating something that will be unhealthy for you. According to leading nutritionists, it is beneficial to eat small meals throughout the entire day. The meals should be at a regular interval of a minimum of 3 hours in a day that will prevent your urges to binge eat. We especially recommend this during working times.
You can remain ensured to consume mid-meal snacks at frequent intervals, but it is also crucially significant to indulge in healthy Indian snacking. It will also prevent you from grabbing a doughnut box or a chocolate bar from the office vending machine.
Helps in Maintaining the Mood
Food is like fuel. Some food will give enough fuel to run smoothly for a short time and crash quickly, while others will give a consistent and slow fuel source to make you feel happy and alert. There are different nutrient-less foods like candy bars, potato chips, sugary drinks, and many more to offer you a hot fuel rush.
They will deliver a jolt of energy and will be rapidly followed by a painful crash which will leave you feeling hungry, cranky, and with no concentration power. On the other hand, a healthy Indian snack will give you slow-burning fuel that will assist you to remain energetic throughout the day. You will never experience any dip in alertness and mood. You will look and feel like a happy person.
Enhancement in productivity, focuses, and stress reduction.
Healthy snacks offer you a high boost of energy. According to different research studies, the employees and students who indulge in healthy snacks during the daytime include more energy, overall performance, and mental perception.
Assists in craving of Carbohydrates
The level of blood sugar fluctuates throughout the day, but it will tend to decrease after 3 to 5 hours of your last consumed meal. Consuming frequent yet small meals will not only accelerate the metabolism but will normalize the blood sugar levels as well. The body will enter famine mode due to hunger, decreasing the metabolism, which will only enhance your weight.
Healthy snacks like fruits, nuts, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, and legumes contain enough nutrition, giving you a satisfying feeling for a long time. It will also prevent you from surrendering to your sweet tooth or the caffeine addiction.
How to know that your snack is healthy?
You can know whether the snack you are consuming is healthy or not through the nutritional facts label on the product back. Here you will get all the required facts about that specific snack as per the serving size. You can also find data like calories, sodium, carbohydrates, iron, fat, sugar, protein content, and other significant information. Based on the health focus or concern, you can select your snack wisely. If you want food items that are lower in sodium, then go for the snack that includes no or low sodium content. If you follow a heart-friendly centered diet, then consider the below factors:
- Ignore products with high sodium or sugar content
- Nuts are a healthy food item, but they include a small serving amount.
- Always consider the recommended portion size on the product nutritional label pack. Taking anything in too much will promote an unnecessary gain in weight.
- Restrict any drinks with added sugar, especially aerated soft drinks and colas
- Consider taking fresh and natural fruit juices for the best nutrition.
- Never take any tetra pack juice as they include additional preservatives and sugar.
- For maintaining a satisfactory level, always combine complex proteins and carbohydrates. It will keep you full for an extended time. Examples of this healthy diet include peanut butter, wheat crackers, apple, cheese, yogurt, and fresh fruit.
- The best healthy Indian snacks include options like vegetables, whole-grain snacks, low-fat dairy products, and fruits.
- Ignore food items that include corn syrup in it as one of their ingredients
Indian Healthy Snacks you can consume in between the meals.
After considering the significance of a healthy Indian snack, it is now time to check out the food items below.
Dhokla is one of the most popular Indian healthy snacks present in the market. It is composed of fermented chickpea flour and rice batter. You can eat this snack also for a light breakfast. In a single serving of a dhokla, there are 11 grams of protein, zero cholesterol, and 283 calories. This snack is also another high source of calcium, iron, and magnesium.
Paneer Kathi Roll or wrap
It is one of the best mouth-watering dishes from West Bengal of India. You can make this popular street food at home. It is full of nutrients and contains loads of sautéed vegetables with different sauces and paneer. It is then wrapped in a thin bread of either grain or whole wheat flour. You might also select both non-vegetarian and vegetarian alternatives to this Indian snack. A single paneer Kathi roll consists of 260 to 350 calories. The high content of vegetables will give you enough carbohydrates, vitamin C, A, and E, and fiber. Whether you select the veg or non-veg option, you will get enough protein sources from this.
Dosa is loved by nearly everybody in South India. It is another snack that is composed of urad dal and fermented rice batter. You can make different variations of this dish with oatmeal, ragi, sprouted moong dal, semolina, and oatmeal. A single dosa consists of 133 calories, most of it coming from proteins and carbohydrates. Dosa also consists of potassium, calcium, and iron, making it an exceptional all-rounder snack. We will recommend making this snack at home to make it more healthy and low in oil, compared to the dosas prepared at restaurants.
Bhel Puri with no Chutney
Bhel Puri is a savory snack from Central India. It is composed of mixed spices, vegetables, puffed rice, tamarind chutney drizzle, and peanuts. To snack on this delicacy with no guilt, you can ignore the chutneys and load with nuts, herbs, and fresh vegetables. A single bhel puri serving includes 60 calories with the perfect combination of complex carbohydrates and high protein. You can select different chats that consist of the whole moong and boiled chickpeas.
It is another popular Gujrati snack containing natural ingredients like yogurt, mustard seeds, chickpea flour, and sesame. Khandvi is a steamed snack and tempered with different seasonings. A single Khandvi serving consists of about 100 grams which is nearly 200 calories. This delicious snack is full of nutrients, high protein, and is gluten-free. It will assist in regulating hunger pangs and blood pressure. It includes other nutritional benefits like manganese, iron, fiber, calcium, and zinc. It is the perfect snack that you can carry to the office as it delivers a good balance between carbohydrates and protein.
Curd or Yogurt Sandwich
Everyone loves to eat sandwiches as a snack. You can make a yogurt sandwich at home from thick curds, fresh vegetables such as onions, carrots, bell peppers, fresh coriander, cabbage, salt, and black pepper. One curd sandwich includes 200 calories and is lower in fat but high in fiber and high protein amount. It also assists in Vitamin C and A, iron, and calcium.
It is a steamed snack from South India. You can also consume this item as lunch or for breakfast. It is generally composed of urad dal and fermented rice batter, but you can also make it with other oatmeal, semolina, ragi, and many more batters. Medium-sized single idli will contain 36 calories, 8 grams of carbohydrates, and 6 grams of proteins. They are also rich in calcium and iron. It will not only keep you contained but also assists in maintaining the blood sugar level.
Samosas are the king of Indian snacks, and their origin lies in Northern India. This delicious snack is loaded with calories when you will select the fried option. But you can also choose the baked version to satiate your craving between the meals with no fat. A baked samosa of a single serving consists of enough fiber and 120 calories. The peas and the potato stuffing will give you ample vitamin C. Apart from these fillings, add other healthy options like minced paneer or chicken with mixed vegetables to opt for. It will not only enhance the nutritional value of the snack but also improve its taste.
Other Healthy Indian Snack Options
Below are some other healthy Indian snack options that will not require much preparation.
Makhanas are some exceptional choices for evening snacks as they are higher in proteins and contain low fat. They are also easily accessible in the market. You can dry roast them in a pan with or without butter or ghee and sprinkle some paprika and salt on it. It will give you a mouth-watering snack you can include in your diet.
Vegetable or Fruit Salad
You can combine your favorite vegetables or fruits in a bowl with some chat masala to have a good snack that you can easily prepare. Vegetables and fruits are high sources of micronutrients and fibers to balance your diet plan. It will also satisfy your hunger and maintain your plan for burning fat for an extended time.
Nuts are an easily accessible snack that offers numerous nutritional benefits. Cashews, pistachios, almonds, walnuts, and raisins can suit every taste bud if you are not allergic to them. They include good fats and high in protein that will impact you with sound mental and physiological health. Thus you can grab a handful of nuts to keep yourself full till it is your mealtime.
Boiled Sprouts or Chana
Boiled Chana or Sprouts are a good source of fiber, iron, potassium, and protein that will not only offer satisfaction for long but also help to keep on track with overall fitness and health goals.
When it comes to healthy Indian snack options, there are numerous alternatives to select from. It will keep you energetic and full for maintaining or losing weight. You can always choose healthy alternatives to ensure that you will get the highest nutritional advantage from snacking.
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