There was an article in last Sunday's New York Times that I couldn’t resist commenting on, about Kellogg’s moving beyond its sugary cereal domain. It seems Tony the Tiger is now venturing into the “g-g-great” world of snacking. Actually, the folks in Battle Creek – I really want to go there now – call it producing new food products for “snacking occasions” or “the snack mind-set.”
I just love those phrases. Who got paid to think them up? I myself am often looking for a “snacking occasion,” but I don’t think I’m the customer Kellogg’s is looking for. My idea of a good snack hasn’t been a can of Pringles – which Kellogg’s is buying from Proctor & Gamble – in a very long time.
(Don’t you wonder how a soap company started making stackable chips in the first place? But I digress.)
I believe in one or two snacks a day as part of a healthy diet. That’s in addition to three moderately sized meals eaten at regular intervals. Sounds like a lot of food, you say. Not really. When I say “snacks,” I mean a couple of tablespoons of nuts and raisins; a small dish of Greek yogurt with some strawberries; a quarter-cup of black bean dip with fresh bell pepper strips; or half an apple or banana with two tablespoons of nut butter.
What do these snacks have that products like Pringles don’t? Protein, plus healthy fat and carbs. Vitamins and minerals. Nutrients, with a capital N. These snacks are real food that will keep you going until your next meal and help you maintain a consistent blood sugar level.
So enjoy a snacking occasion when you need one. God knows I do. But remember that a healthy “snack mind-set” requires choosing quality over quantity.
For more nutrition tips, visit www.nutritionu.net.