Breakfast without a bowl - Snack Ideas for Weight Loss

Snack Ideas for Weight Loss: Bars, Yogurt, Crackers, Toppings, Cheese

Morning and Afternoon Snacks

The additions of morning tea and afternoon snacks are very important. By including these meals even though you may not feel like eating them will help you to control the amount and quality of what you eat at lunch and dinner and this is where you will make the big gains.

In the future this will allow you to decrease the portion size of these larger meals and allow your weight to continue to decrease while keeping hunger at bay. The idea is to eat before you are hungry rather than waiting until you are hungry at the main meals of the day.

Breakfast for men - What are the acceptable snacks for weight loss

The snacks provide a bridge between meals and are there as a small top up: boosting energy and blunting hunger. The last meal will have been only 2-3 hours ago and the next meal will be in another 2-3 hours. You should not be aiming to feel full after the snack but satisfied.

Fruit is also a brilliant option for snacks especially for morning tea when the extra fluid and carbohydrates can give you that boost you need. You may want to save the more powerful natural appetite suppressant effects of the protein based snacks (yoghurt or protein topped crackers) until the mid afternoon when hunger often strikes.

Snack Bars

Snack/cereal/muesli or fruit bars are very convenient ways to make sure you have your mid-morning and mid afternoon snack while you are out and about or caught short with limited choices. As they stay fresh for a long time, are easily eaten, and can be eaten on the go in between appointments or in the car there really is no reason to skip a meal or to arrive at a late meal hungry. They are a good source of fruit, fibre and whole grains. Keep a few stashed away in your car, hand bag, gym bag, work draw and any other place you regularly spend time.

  • Many bars are high in fat and sugar. Choose bars that are fruit or cereal based.

  • Choose bars that have less than 5g fat/100g and more than 5g fibre/100g.

  • Snack bars that are covered in yoghurt or choc are higher in calories and fat.

  • Protein bars can be high in calories as most are covered in chocolate and have added sugar.

  • Choose bars that are lowest in total energy (<650kJ/bar).

  • Bars that contain whole grains and fruit are higher in fibre.

  • Check the ingredient list for hidden sugars.

  • One bar should be enough for a snack – if this does not satisfy you add fruit or yoghurt.


yogurt is a light refreshing snack that is low in calories and packed with protein. As part of a regular healthy weight diet yoghurt is very effective. The protein helps to suppress appetite and as it is water based it contains very few calories but is very filling.

As has been explained previously the calcium in low fat dairy products helps to bind fats decreasing their absorption resulting in a boost to weight loss efforts.

Yoghurt also contains many nutrients essential for strong healthy bones including calcium and Vitamin D. There are now many ‘Bio – Active’ yoghurts that help to increase the good bacteria in your digestive system. This helps you to digest foods more efficiently and produce essential nutrients in the gut.

  • Berry flavored yoghurts have the added benefit of extra antioxidants.

  • Choose yoghurts that are <450KJ per pottle.

  • If necessary add berries, banana or a sprinkle of cereal to increase fibre and fullness.

(More Skim Dairy Food Ideas Here)


    Crackers are a great base to build a snack around with protein and salad vegetables while limiting your carbohydrate intake. The addition of protein in the form of lean meats and low fat cheeses provide a feeling of fullness. Topping this with salad vegetables like tomatoes, cucumber, corn, grated carrot or pickles and chutneys bulks the meal out with minimal calories. Without a topping crackers don’t do the job you require of them as a top up mid-morning or mid-afternoon you can eat a whole lot of dry crackers without a feeling of fullness.

    • Crackers can be a healthy snack but many are high in fat especially many baked crackers.

    • Choose crackers that have less than 5g fat/100g and more than 5g fibre/100g.

    • Many flavors of the recommended brands below have different calorie and fat content. Always

      check the label for low fat, high fibre and ideally low salt (<350mg sodium/100g).

    • Some crackers claim to be cholesterol free although they still have a high fat content.

    • Have 4 - 6 small crackers or 2 larger crackers for an afternoon snack.



    Most dips are higher in fat. They contain added oils, nuts or cheese which tips the fat content of many to over 40%. High fat toppings can add a lot of extra calories to a snack which can easily be a low fat one. Choosing fruit or vegetable based chutneys or pickles gives your cracker or sandwich some flavor and moisture without the need for fat. When selecting a hummus look carefully at the fat content. The main ingredient is chick peas and therefore this can be very low fat, however many brands add oils and nuts. Look for a simple plain hummus or alternatively make your own using chickpeas and spinach with a dash of olive oil.
    • Choose low fat varieties less than 5g fat per 100g.

    • If choosing higher fat toppings just minimize the amount.

    • Add protein (e.g. tinned tuna/salmon/sardines, mussels, prawns, trim meats, low fat cheese/dips, sour cream) and salad vegetables (e.g. tomato, celery, grated carrot, cucumber) to increase the feeling of fullness.


    Cheese and low fat dairy



    Cheese should be included in our diet in moderation. It provides protein which helps to keep us full so can be a great addition to crackers, sandwiches and salads. The consumption of low fat dairy products has been shown to limit fat absorption and help with weight reduction. Calcium obtained from cheese is essential for bone health and is necessary for energy production.

    Firm cheeses, like cheddar normally have the highest calcium content. However because most cheeses are beyond our recommended 10g fat/100g, are all high in saturated fat, and few are low in salt it is important to focus on limiting the amount you use. Reduce it to minimal and have cheese as one of many additions to foods rather than the major ingredient.

    Cooking using stronger flavored cheeses like parmesan can help to use less cheese over all and also grating cheese so it spreads further. Substitute cream in recipes with: light sour cream, light coconut cream or Greek light yogurt.


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