Packaged snacks are certainly convenient, but unfortunately most of them are high in salt or sugar. The truth is that gummy candies, salty chips and cereal bars are actually treats, not snacks—and they’re not the ideal way to fuel busy, active kids.
To help your little ones keep their brains and bodies in top form during the school day, it’s smart to pack a snack with a protein punch. Protein is well-researched for its link to satiety (the feeling of fullness) and weight control. It helps fill children’s tummies so they aren’t distracted by rumbling bellies, plus they stay full for longer. That means they are not famished by their next meal, keeping their mood more stable—no more after-school hangry fits.
The following snacks are protein-rich, and have between 80 to 165 calories (you can pair the lower calorie options with a little something extra) and each one is low in sugar and has less than 270 milligrams of sodium per serving (with one exception—the SimplyProtein chips at 320 mg sodium per serving).
Seapoint Farms Dry Roasted Edamame Lightly Salted
13 g protein per ¼-cup serving, 130 calories
Peanuts are not allowed at most primary schools, and these are a great substitute. Protein-packed, lightly salted and addictively crunchy, these are great on their own or as part of a trail mix. They also provide 10 percent of the day’s iron requirement, a hard-to-get nutrient for many kids.