Love to Nibble? No Problem!

By Jennifer Walsh

If eating healthy is a part of your plan for fall, we’re right there with you. All of this time at home, accompanied by quite a bit of uncertainty, has led to overeating across the board. It’s been a nerve-wracking time for many, so don’t feel bad if you’ve found yourself spending more time snacking thanZooming. (Maybe we are snacking because of all of the Zooming!)

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It’s no surprise that many Americans have admitted to gaining 15 pounds over the past six months, giving rise to the term“Quarantine 15.” Dr. John Morton, medical director of bariatric surgery at Yale NewHaven Health System, has seen patients intelehealth appointments who have gained five, 10, and even 30 pounds.

While many of us are continuing to work and school from home, it’s important to get the constant “bad” snacking under control. That means filling our pantries with great, good-for-you goodies that can help fulfill our cravings while also making them delicious and guilt-free.

Here are a few of our favorite finds…

UNITE FOOD

Based in Southern California, UNiTE is the world’s first globally inspired protein bar. UNiTE Food was born to shake up the run-of-the-mill bar aisle, inviting customers to discover and taste the delicious diversity of flavors from around the world—no passport required! Each UNiTE bar is made with wholesome, nutritious, real food ingredients and packed with nut butters, hemp seeds, and prebiotic fiber.Offering 10 grams of protein each, UNiTE bars are gluten-, dairy-, and soy-free.

$29/12-pack, UniteFood.com

PIPCORN

Jen Martin, her brother, Jeff, and his wife, Teresa, built Pipcorn from the ground up in Brooklyn, actively pioneering for more diversity in the natural foods space. Pipcorn reimagines snacks with heirloom corn to create better-for-everyone, modern favorites, and offers four lines: Heirloom Popcorn, HeirloomCheese Balls, Heirloom Corn Dippers, and HeirloomCrackers. Pipcorn recently donated 50% of website sales for a weekend to the George Floyd Memorial Fund, and banded together with other brands to spearhead a month-long Pride initiative in support of the BlackLives Matter movement. All proceeds from this benefited The Okra Project, a collective organization that seeks to address the global crisis faced by Black Trans people.

$3.99 – $4.79, PipSnacks.com

PARTAKE FOODS

Denise Woodard, founder of Partake Foods, is a food-allergy-mom-turned-champion-for-better-options. She was frustrated with the taste and nutritional profile of the existing snacks in the allergy space, so she worked to create a brand that made delicious products with ingredients you can feel good about sharing with your family.These bite-sized cookies are just the things you need when you’re hungry to indulge without the guilt.

$14.99 – $24.99, PartakeFoods.com

BITSY’S

This organic food brand was founded with a mighty mission to give families a smarter, happier way to snack by offering healthy cookies and crackers for kids. The three founders of Bitsy’s—all moms (one of whom is actress GabrielleUnion)—were keenly aware of how access to food varies dramatically, particularly across socio-economic lines. They recognized the importance of creating products that address the inequity in access and affordability of wholesome, kid-focused snacks and food. In response to the coronavirus, Bitsy’s donated snacks to the Los Angeles UnifiedSchool District, as well as WIN (Women in Need), the largest provider of shelter and supportive housing for New YorkCity’s homeless families.

$24/case (6 boxes), Bitsys.com

NATURE’S GARDEN

Nature’s Garden is an innovative snack food brand that believes in creating delicious and functional products that not only curb hunger but also promote heart health and digestive wellness. They have a big selection of dried fruits, trail mixes, and nuts and seeds. One of their most popular items is the Keto SnackMix, a heavenly handful of mixed nuts and probiotic cheese balls that aligns with the low-carb, high-fat Keto diet. No other snack food on the market contains a naturally occurring strain of probiotic that is microencapsulated to ensure the bacteria in your gut is healthy and balanced. The probiotic also helps to shed belly fat and improve overall digestive health.

$13-$15, NaturesGarden.net

SNACK MAGIC

SnackMagic was founded by STADIUM, the popular, New York-based group lunch delivery service that was a daily part of office culture for hundreds of businesses prior to COVID-19. Once work from home became the norm, founder Shaunak Amin switched things up to keep people happily fed even though they were no longer working in their offices. Shaunak’s SnackMagic is now a national snack delivery service that allows anyone to create or gift a customizable snack box. It’s perfect for individuals who want to add new snack options to their home pantry, as well as for businesses to keep their employees motivated while working remotely. SnackMagic offers 500 products from more than 200+ brands, most of which are new or emerging, so it’s the perfect place to discover new favorites.

Starts at $45, SnackMagic.com

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