Are you a stress eater, finding yourself craving salty, crunchy foods, then looking for something sweet, then back to salty again? You’re not alone – it’s a reaction that many of us are wired with, and judging by the vast amounts of sweet & salty snack food options, food makers are well aware of our weakness!
In today’s Get the Skinny, Molly has the best and worst of popular sweet & salty snacks on shelves, helping us to minimize the damage if we do cave in and ‘stress eat’!
It’s not all in your head: Stress can increase our levels of cortisol, a stress hormone that, among other things, can increase our cravings for salty and sweet foods.
Foods high in sugary carbs, along with salt and fat, ‘light up’ the same areas of our brains that are impacted by addictive drugs like cocaine.
Eating too much sugary, carb-y snacks will leave you feeling even more bottomed out than before… so look for salty-sweet snacks that have less sugar, and provide belly-filling fiber, protein, and/or healthy fats.
Jolly Time Healthy Pop Caramel Apple
Per cup: 20 calories – 5 grams carb – 1 gram fiber – 0 grams sugar
Contains artificial sweetener Sucralose and partially hydrogenated oil, but less than 0.5 grams trans fat
Blue Diamond Honey Roasted Almonds
Per ounce: 160 cals – 9 grams carb – 2 grams fiber – 5 grams sugar (Almonds, sugar, vegetable oil)
Sweet ‘n Salty Honey Nut Chex Mix
Per ounce (1/2 cup): 130 cals – 22 grams carb – 1 grams fiber – 5 grams sugar
Essentially is white flour, corn meal, some whole wheat flour, and white & brown sugar.
Crunch ‘n Munch Butter Toffee Popcorn
Per ounce (2/3 cup): 150 cals – 22 grams carb – 1 gram fiber – 12 grams sugar
First ingredient is corn syrup, followed by sugar.
M&M’s Sweet & Salty Snack Mix
Per 1.5 ounces (1/3 cup): 200 calories – 27 grams carb – 2 grams fiber – 16 grams sugar
M&M’s, sugar, cornstarch, and corn syrup are the first four ingredients.
Snackwell’s Caramel Popcorn (130-calorie packs)
Per ounce (one packet): 130 calories – 25 grams carb – <1 gram fiber – 20 grams sugar
(Brown sugar and sugar are the first two ingredients; corn syrup is listed fourth).