Snacking can either make or break your weight gain. Don't give into a bag of Cheetos or can of Coke when you've worked so hard! Women's Health has a list of the best weight loss snacks (sans fruits and vegetables) to munch on when you can't wait for dinner.
1. Dark chocolate: When you're in the mood for something sweet, a square of the dark stuff is your best bet—and not just because it's considerably healthier than a brownie. Research suggests that foods with super intense flavors tend to tire out your taste buds faster. So you end up feeling satisfied with a square or two—versus an entire sleeve of meh cookies.
>> Check out our Dark Chocolate Zucchini Bread recipe!
2. Low-fat cottage cheese with cinnamon: Don't think of it as your grandma's diet food. This power snack will keep you full long after you're done eating. A 160-calorie cup of low-fat cottage cheese packs 28 grams of protein—which, FYI, is five grams more than a cup of low-fat Greek yogurt. A sprinkle of cinnamon keeps things interesting and tricks your taste buds into thinking you're having a sweet snack.
3. In-shell pistachios: Nuts are on every weight-loss food list, and for good reason: They're packed with protein and healthy fats, which help you stay fuller longer. By picking pistachios instead of the usual almonds, you can eat a few more of them for fewer calories overall. More importantly, having to shell each individual nut takes a bit, so snack time lasts way longer.
4. Roasted chickpeas: They're salty and crunchy like chips, but they're packed with appetite-squashing protein and fiber instead of empty calories.
To make them, toss a can of chickpeas (drained and rinsed) with a tablespoon of olive oil, a pinch of salt, and a teaspoon or two of ground cumin or smoked paprika. Bake at 400°F for about 10 minutes. (You can use the leftovers on salads instead of croutons.)
>> Here's our Spicy Roasted Chickpeas recipe!
For the rest of the best snacks for weight loss, click here to read the story on Women's Health!