Wednesday, June 13, 2012

What are the Best Options from the Vending Machine?

We work most of our lives, and most folks don’t always find themselves with a farm nearby to just go and pick an apple at our leisure. And so when those 3 or 4pm hunger pangs hit, we head straight for our most convenient option: the vending machine.

Let’s be honest, most items in the vending machine are full of salt, sugar, and calories. And you don’t get to see the nutritional value before you choose which sucks! But you might be surprised to know that there are some reasonably healthy options you can get. Here are a few:

Granola bars: Depending on what country you are in, there are usually some low calorie granola bars in vending machines. Be very careful here though because some granola bars pack tons of sugar, and no natural ingredients. So look for items with nuts, oats, and fruits. Some good examples? The Nature Valley Oats and Honey Crunchy granola bar (180 calories), Quaker Chewy Low Fat granola bars (usually about 110 calories), and the Kashi TLC Chewy granola bars (about 140 calories).

Chips: Chips do contain a lot of empty calories, and so the key is to go for the baked or multigrain kind, and stick to the original flavor where possible. A lot of the junk is in the added flavors. One great is example is Popchips Original flavor (120 calories). It has few ingredients, low fat, and it isn’t fried. Other options are the Baked Lays Original (210 calories), or the Sun Chips Original (140 calories). Wheat Thins are another really good option with about 190 calories. Again, try to stick to the original flavor. If you have reduced salt options, even better.

Nuts: If you’re looking for a good protein option, nuts are the way to go. Just make sure you buy sizes that you can finish and still stay under your calorie limits. Because we all know it’s difficult to stop with nuts. Planters’ Honey Roasted Peanuts is a good option with only 160 calories. If you do find an unsalted option, I’d suggest sticking to that instead as packaged nuts can sometimes be packed with tons of salt.

Popcorn: There are currently so many low calorie popcorn options out there, but they are sometimes hidden at the bottom of the machine, and so you may not see them. Plus, if you want something fast or don’t have a microwave around, this may not appeal to you. But popcorn is a good low calorie food because it is natural (Well, when you don’t add in tons of butter, sugar, and salt). Orville Redenbacher Natural mini popcorn bags usually contain about 200 calories or less, and Smart Food Reduced Fat popcorn contains only about 120 calories.

There are many other options including breakfast cereal bars and trail mixes that are low calorie vending machine options you can stick to. We have the tendency to go overboard with the vending machine because we think we don’t have choices, but we do!

Cheers Eights & Weights!

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  1. Erm, where is my snicker bar? lol. I like the nuts option a lot

  2. Thanks for these nice opinion.All opinion is too good.

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