On a Whole30, there are strict rules and there are recommendations. For example, no alcohol is a rule, as there are zero situations in which alcohol is the healthy choice (while on a Whole30).
No (or limited) snacking is a recommendation. It can be good for our bodies to go for longer periods between eating, but in certain situations where you’re busy, your last meal was too small, or you’re simply just HANGRY, then the healthy choice is to snack.
The health bennies of not snacking:
- Allows your digestive system to completely digest the food you’ve eaten and then rest.
- Encourages your body to burn fat from both food and body stores — if you have a constant supply of food, your body is not likely to burn your fat stores.
- Allows blood sugar and insulin levels to go down after a meal (which has to happen for you to burn fat for energy).
To determine if you really need a snack, Melissa Hartwig, the creator and queen of all things Whole30, offers the best test:
But Melissa, how do I know if I’m really hungry or just having a craving? Here’s my favorite trick: ask yourself, “Am I hungry enough to eat steamed fish and broccoli?” If the answer is yes, you’re legitimately hungry; go eat a snack! If the answer is, “No, but I’d eat an RXBAR/trail mix/scoop of almond butter” you’re just having a craving–no snack for you!
What to snack on:
You may be hungry enough for steamed fish and broccoli, but there are plenty of other tasty, nutrient-dense options.
The purpose of the snack is to fuel you until the next meal, so it should be multi-macro. This means it should have at least 2, ideally all 3 macros: carbs, protein, and fats.
My favorite Whole30 multi-macro snacks are:
- Tuna salad made with mashed avocado, served on cucumber slices (protein + fat)
- Deli turkey roll-ups, filled with fresh veggies, guacamole and maybe a little bacon (protein + fat + carbs)
- Almond butter stuffed dates with a side of hard-boiled eggs (carbs + fat + protein)
- Date Energy Balls
- Compliant energy bars (such as some of the RXbar flavors.)
- Compliant meat jerky or meat sticks (such as Epic — not all ‘meat’ the mark, be sure to check the label).
- Roasted nuts and plain dried fruit.
And to store in your back pocket, here’s a complete list of Whole 30 approved emergency snacks.
Pro-tip: to get the full digestive reset benefits of a Whole30, eat hearty meals so that you don’t need to snack in between. Territory is always here to help you ward off snack attacks with a wide variety of satisfying, Whole30 approved breakfasts, lunches and dinners.