Are there any healthy snacks/fast-food items?

Pani PooriWhenever I feel hungry and am outside my house, I search for some healthy snacks/fast-food items to eat. I am quite shocked to find that there are very very few healthy items that I can buy! I just don’t understand why all the food industries seem to be concentrating on unhealthy (and supposedly tasty) options? Isn’t it because we have been eating such food blindly instead of demanding healthier food?

I am fine with eating fast-food/snacks once in a while, even if it’s not very healthy (for the taste). But, since I started walking I have been tempted quite a lot and I have been eating considerable amounts of unhealthy food.

Recently, I decided that I should eat only healthy food, and I even tried my hand at making bread sandwich at home (which was discontinued as it required too much efforts), but I am not able to find healthier options outside my house (beyond a few).

A small list of snacks/fast-food items I get around my house:

  • Puff/Samosa/Cream bun/All bun varieties – Unhealthy
  • Mini-pizza/mini-burger/vada-pav/finger chips – Unhealthy
  • Dosa/idly/other tiffin items – Small shops, so not sure about the quality
  • Pani puri/bhel puri/dahi puri/pav bhaji – Unhealthy
  • Bonda/bajji/vada/masal vada/tea/coffee – Unhealthy
  • Cold drinks/Soda/Ice creams – Unhealthy
  • Fruit salad – Healthy (but I don’t get it around my house!)
  • Fruits – Healthy (except banana, we can’t buy others in one/two numbers)
  • Sweet corn – Healthy
  • Stuffed roti – Unhealthy (masala)
  • Tender coconut – Healthy
  • Packed/freshly made chips, mixer, other snacks in shops – Unhealthy
  • Vegetable/frozen sandwich – Healthy (hopefully, except the cheese)
  • Bread, fruit bread, etc – Ok, but will increase weight
  • Soups – Small shops, so not sure what kind of water they use
  • Roasted groundnuts – ???
  • Cane juice/fruit juices – Ok, but not sure what kind of water they use
  • Sweets – Sugar, Unhealthy
  • Cakes/fruit cakes – Sugar, ???
  • Biscuits – Sugar, ???
  • chocolates – Sugar, Unhealthy

So, what can one eat outside? There are so many options but most of them are very unhealthy.

Forget eating outside, think about the snacks/sweets we make at home. How many of them are healthy?

With every passing generation we seem to eat more and more unhealthy foods. If we keep eating such fast-food and snacks frequently, we might become obese or get some health conditions like sugar, diabetics, cholesterol, etc.

I wonder how and why we are encouraging this ‘culture’?

Destination Infinity

PS: Are there any healthy snacks that you can think of? Please suggest in the comments section.

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39 Replies to “Are there any healthy snacks/fast-food items?”

  1. First things first. You are tempting me with this mouth watery pani puri!
    Yeah..in India we tend to fall for street food so much – which although satisfy our tummy fails to support our appetite.
    If you cannot purchase 1 or 2 fruits, buy half dozen, and use one every day. Keep an apple or banana in your backpack all the time – nothing to beat them.
    Buy wheat or oat biscuits and put some in small box for yourself.
    If you have little preparation time, crush any fruit – whisk or grind them to paste with sugar or little honey. Mix them with thick yogurt and relish it anytime! I hope you have a bag/backpack to keep them wherever you go!

    1. Wheat/oat biscuits are a good idea. I can buy fruits, but I find it boring to eat whole fruits. I can however, cut fruits and make a salad myself but I am lazy! I should try this fruit squash that you have written about in your blog as well. Let me see.

      Destination Infinity

  2. Nowadays biscuits are coming in different varieties. Nutrichoice has got ragi biscuit too. Idly is best! Corn also is good which is in your list. Ground nut with limited quantity is OK.

    Like Vaish says, fruit is the best!

    1. I am fine with idly, but I am not sure how healthy the sambar made by small restaurants near my house, are… The issue with groundnut is, I don’t get it in a fixed place. The vendors keep moving!

      Destination Infinity

    1. I think idly should be made tastier. Like fried idly or roasted idly or kaima idly. That would make it tastier and more apt for a snack.

      Destination Infinity

  3. A crunchy and juicy apple is a wonderful snack for the in between meal snack. Nuts are healthy in limited quantities. And if you are hungry, then idlis or sandwiches are best. But indulging in ‘unhealthy’ stuff once in a way is fine because too much deprivation can cause a rebound.

    1. That is correct. We can’t refrain from unhealthy food totally. Eating them in small quantities now and then may be required.

      Destination Infinity

  4. Who can resist pani puri… first you tempt with unhealthy bit delicious snacks and then ask for healthy alternatives hmm… alright alright.. I like fruits a lot so my healthiest bet is on any kind of fruit and sometimes granola bars too.

    1. I am not sure how healthy these nutri-bars are. They have so much sugar – that puts me off. But I wonder why people don’t make healthy snacks that are tasty and tempting too… Are they mutually exclusive? I don’t think so.

      Destination Infinity

  5. Well I think that any fast food is unhealthy .. food cooked fast can’t be healthy…

    but the names and the pictures are making me so HUNGRYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY

  6. A long list, but can’t help it. If you want to eat outside the house, you have to be extra careful about raw food too, as we are not sure whether it was washed well, kept covered etc.. .. Difficult..

  7. I think anything in moderation is good, even moderation.
    Usually 2 exchanges of carbs are maximally recommended for snacking. This includes one fo the foll.

    A big fruit
    2 medium sized fruits
    A small fistful of dry fruits
    A tall glass of juice
    A cup of corn
    Oat bisuits
    Fruit salad
    Ragi pork av ( do you know what this is?)
    Sprouts salad ( amazingly healthy)
    A small cup of fruit yoghurt
    Steamed buns or idles or stuffed momo etc- a few.
    A glass of Horlicks and the like

    But sometimes these dont fill tummy. So maybe a roll like chappati with some veggies inside is a good option also.

    The list goes on and on. I have come to realize that it helps to take your snack from home and avoid eating out always.
    Else, working out is a good option πŸ™‚

    1. I know what is ragi, but not the ragi pork av! Momo is healthy is it? There is one vendor selling it in front of supermarket advertising it as ‘100% oil free’, etc. I should try it, then.

      Actually, I started walking as a form of workout. But while walking, I buy and eat all kinds of foods that I get outside! I know, there is no point πŸ™‚

      Destination Infinity

      1. Sorry that was ragi porimav πŸ™‚ iPad spellings are weird. Sorry!
        Momo is steamed – pls go ahead and eat them. Don’t worry about the veggie filling being clean and all though πŸ˜›

  8. This is a very interesting topic. After having my daughter i have realized importance of healthy eating. Before that i was a big junk food junkie πŸ™‚
    But now i try to have healthy food in a hope that my daughter will see me doing that and follow the suit πŸ™‚ (though once in a while, i let myself go)
    Apart from already covered snacks i think following items can be considered healthy:
    1) Chana jor garam (if you can avoid the masala) with onion, tomato and cucumber will be a good and healthy thing to eat.
    2) Roasted Grams (Chana) with Jaggery is very healthy, full of protein, iron and energy. but if you are trying to reduce weight then skip jaggery.
    3) And in case of biscuits, you can try the healthy variety (like multi grain or raagi biscuits)
    4) Murmura Bhel (again with on onion, tomato, cucumber, boiled potato and green chutney is a very tasty and healthy thing to have, weight watchers can skip potato)
    5) Khakhra (You can try methi khakhara for more nutrition and taste)
    6) Roasted Poha chevdo

    1. I am not familiar with your Items: 4,5,6. I guess it should be available down South, but with different names. Thanks for those suggestions, I’ll explore a bit. And yes, it is very important to set an example for kids to follow. It’s much more effective than giving lectures πŸ™‚

      Destination Infinity

      1. Check out these links:

        4) http://blogs.rediff.com/indianvegetariankitchen/2009/05/01/murmura-chaatlow-fat-bhel-puri/
        if you are watching weight avoid, sweet chutney. Go for green chutney instead.

        5) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khakhra
        I used to buy Khakhra in Hyderabad, i know it’s available in bangalore. not sure about other southern cities though.

        6) http://www.vahrehvah.com/poha+chivda:5523
        This too was available in Hyderabad, though i used to make it at home.

    1. Yeah, that’s right. But even in houses, they prepare some foods with a lot of oil, sugar, ghee, etc. And pass it on as healthy!

      Destination Infinity

  9. Hi Rajesh, you are making me really hungry with that list! As for healthy snacks, I had the same problem so I just gave up eating snacks. I just try to cook something healthy or I have some fruit.

  10. /*Fruits – Healthy (except banana, we can’t buy others in one/two numbers) */

    I think u can buy one or two in a supermarket like Reliance fresh or more shops.. I used to buy and finish off then itself πŸ™‚

    Well… try walking by morning and there won’t be any snacks for you to get tempted πŸ™‚

    1. Oh, there are certain shops and vendors that target the morning walkers specifically. They set-up mobile shops outside the park, etc! I think it’s better to walk in my terrace. I am already doing it on some days!

      Destination Infinity

    1. So, is this comment indirectly saying that what others have put up is more useful than mine? πŸ™‚

      Destination Infinity

  11. I guess it depends on the preparation and ingredients. Mostly fast foods are unhealthy. In the USA, they are teaching in schools not to eat fast food yet they kids eat those.

    1. We should also teach our kids in schools that fast food is unhealthy. That will reduce some craze among them (hopefully).

      Destination Infinity

    1. We can eat small quantity, but it will be tastier if it’s mixed with other things like mixer, etc. Oh no, again I am going to the unhealthy side…….. πŸ™‚

      Destination Infinity

  12. Healthiest options-
    1. Fruits
    2.veggies like tomatoes,carrot,green peas
    3.corn on cob
    4. bhel without sev,puri,lots of tomato,onion,green chutney,less of sweet chutney
    5.poha
    6.nimbu paani without sugar,coconut water
    7.lassi
    8.bhune chane
    9.nuts
    10.milk
    11.idli
    12.soup without cream
    13.stir fried vegetables
    One thing,momos are steamed but their shell/casing or whatever that white thing is called is made of maida-UNHEALTHY.

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