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Diet Diva
Diet Diva

Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus. 

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Satisfying Snacks

I am always in the quest for snacks that will satisfy in many ways: mouth (taste), brain (cravings), and stomach (satiety). When I saw a recent study comparing 4 different snacks and the effects on physical and psychological hunger, I was intrigued.

The study measured how different foods impacted the participant's desire to eat again, how much they thought about food, their mood and energy level, and satisfying sweet cravings. Four snacks were studied: fruit flavored yogurt, low-fat wheat crackers, shelled edamame, and a whole soy and fruit bar. Each woman in the study ate of these snacks each afternoon for a week, hitting all four snacks in the four week test period.

Results: The whole soy and real fruit bar was rated best by participants at managing hunger and cravings, taste, and perceptions of healthfulness. The bar has a nice combination of protein, fiber, fat, and nutrients that satisfy.

Dietitian Tanya Zuckerbrot, MS, RD conducted the research. "Women want foods that taste good and make them feel good, which can mean having higher energy levels, curbing cravings, or it can relate to feeling good about putting that food into your body--many prefer all-natural ingredients in a food, for instance. If the food doesn't do these things, women may not be as satisfied and may still have the urge-even if they aren't hungry-to reach for something else to completely satisfy," said Zuckerbrot.

What is the whole soy and real fruit bar used in the study? I had to do some digging to find out what they used, but it was SOYJOY. I love SOYJOY bars myself. My favorite flavor is the mango coconut, but the raisin almond is a close second. I love them with a 4 oz glass of milk or a decaf skim latte. They are almost like a biscotti so they go well with morning or afternoon coffee.

I am a believer in glycemic index and I look for fiber and protein in snack foods. All snacks need to taste good (of course!) and satisfy my brain as well as my belly.

Other good examples of snacks that will satisfy:
  • High fiber cereal with milk or yogurt (crunchy, sweet, can be creamy if yogurt is used)
  • Granola (sweet and crunchy)
  • Trail mix: cereal like Cheerios or similar, nuts, dried fruit, etc.
  • Light or air popped popcorn and dried cranberries together (sweet and salty, crunchy)
  • Nuts and chocolate chips (sweet and salty, creamy)

For more info on SOYJOY, visit www.soyjoy.com
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About the Author


Tara Gidus is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition and fitness.

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