Thanks to Audie from the Chamber Office in recognition of National Worksite Wellness Week compliments of Montana Chamber Choices.


Top Healthy, On-the-run Snacks

Your best snack choices when you're pressed for time.

Unhealthy snack foods are everywhere. When you're hungry it's tough to ignore that cellophane-wrapped slice of pound cake by the cash register, or the BBQ-flavored chips in the vending machine. But the snack scene is changing for the better. People are looking for snacks with (nutritional) benefits, even when they're on the run.

With all snacks, it's important to keep an eye on calories. A healthy snack should be no more than 200 calories: if you are trying to lose weight, limit snack calories to between 100-150 calories. Here are some favorite, healthy snack picks:

Crackers, Pretzels and Chips

Crackers, pretzels and chips can be part of a healthy diet if you keep an eye on portion size. Be sure to read the label to determine how many servings are in a package. Often what looks like a single serving size really contains 2 1/2 or 3 servings.

*         Whole-grain crackers: Wasa, Ryvita Crispbreads, Kashi TLC or Reduced Fat Triscuits.

*         Chips: Baked is better than fried when it comes to potato or tortilla chips. Look for Guiltless Gourmet tortilla chips and Stacy's Multigrain pita chips.

*         Trader Joe's Honey Whole-wheat Pretzel Sticks or Newman's Own Spelt Pretzels.

*         Pirate's Booty ice-and-corn cheese puffs or Snikiddy Cheese Snacks.

Snack Bars

Most snack bars are high in sugar and empty calories. There are healthy options out there. You just might not be able to find them at every convenience store. Look for bars with real fruit or whole grains. Avoid ones loaded with sugar or saturated fat from palm oil. Here are some top picks you can find at supermarkets and natural foods stores:

*         Barbara's Crunchy Organic Granola Bars

*         Health Valley Organic Bars

*         Kashi TLC Cereal Bars & Chewy Granola Bars

*         Larabar Fruit & Nut Bars

*         Nature Valley Crunchy Granola Bars & Chewy Trail Mix Bars

*         Trader Joe's Cereal Bars

Dairy Options

Milk, cheese and yogurt make great snacks for someone on the run - as long as you watch the fat content and portion size. Look for low-fat yogurts in 6-oz containers and nonfat or 1% milk in the 8-oz size. Cheese comes in convenient snack sizes too - look for reduced-fat string cheese sticks, or Laughing Cow Babybel or Land O Lakes individual cheese rounds.


Look for raw or unsalted dry-roasted nuts like almonds and walnuts. Do keep tabs on home many you eat though. Nut calories add up fast. For instance, 14 walnut halves are about 185 calories.

Fruits & Veggies

Snacks are a great way to boost your fruit and veggie consumption. Here are a few of our favorites:

*         Fruits you can eat out of hand are nature's ideal snack foods, apples, pears, oranges, grapes, plums, bananas and nectarines are all portable.

*         Baby carrots, celery sticks and broccoli florets are easy to grab at in-store salad bars.

*         Dried fruits make excellent snacks. Watch portion size though and be sure to check the label to make sure they are not fried (like most banana chips) and sugar is not added.

*         Just Tomatoes! Just Veggie! snack mix comes in a convenient .75 oz snack size. Sensible Foods dried sweet corn or dried fruit snacks are handy too. Look for these brands at natural foods stores and co-ops.