To tackle those New Year’s resolutions head-on, we need to make sure our shelves are stocked with healthy foods to fuel our fitness goals. Luckily, the new year brings plenty of tasty new options to choose from. These 10 healthy snack trends will rule your kitchen in 2018.
Collagen Peptides1 of 11
While we might not recognize it as an edible substance in and of itself, most of us have heard of this mysterious protein known as collagen. Found in abundance throughout the body, collagen is the "glue" that helps hold our joints and tendons together and gives skin its strength and elasticity.
As we age, our natural production of collagen slows down and other lifestyle factors (such as a high-sugar diet, smoking or sun exposure) can further deplete collagen levels in the body. Adding collagen powder to a smoothie or drinking collagen-rich bone broth are good ways to boost collagen intake, which in turn can help improve skin quality, digestion, athletic performance, recovery and immune health.
Pictured: Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides
Veggie & Fruit Squeeze Packets2 of 11
Little pouches of pureed fruit and veggies used to be relegated to the baby food aisle, but 2018 sees them making an appearance at snack time for adults, as well.
An easy way to fuel your body with organic, nutritious fruits and veggies, squeeze pouches are perfect for camping or other adventures that require convenient, portable and easy-to-digest snacks. Not crazy about slurping down the same fruit blend as your 8-month-old? Several companies are now making packets geared towards the adult palate. Apple Quinoa Cinnamon Oatmeal, anyone?
Pictured: Munk Pack Apple Quinoa Cinnamon Oatmeal Fruit Squeeze
Bone Broth3 of 11
It's time for kale and quinoa to take a back seat to the next superfood: bone broth. World-class athletes like Kobe Bryant and Shalane Flanagan have added this sip-able soup to their nutritional regimes to help support their immune systems and reap the benefits of both minerals and healing compounds.
Bone broth is rich in collagen, which helps heal the gut lining and reduces inflammation, as well as glutamine, glycine and proline. You can make your own broth, or choose a brand that utilizes grass-fed meats to get the maximum benefit from the nourishing bones.
Pictured: Kettle & Fire 100% Grass-Fed Beef Bone Broth
Spirulina Powder4 of 11
This strangely-named blue-green powder is one of the healthiest–and most often misunderstood–superfoods in existence. Grown in tropical locations like Hawaii, spirulina is a type of algae that helps prevent cancer, alleviates sinus issues and is a plant-based source of protein, B-vitamins and iron.
Try adding spirulina powder to your favorite green smoothie or use 1/4 teaspoon to brighten up your hummus. Like any supplement, it's important to ensure that your spirulina is of the highest quality and is free from contamination.
Pictured: Thrive Market Spirulina Powder
All-Natural Energy Bars5 of 11
Gone are the days of scarfing down questionable chemicals and additives under the guise of an "energy bar." As demand has increased for clean, real-food ingredients in our snacks, the market has responded with a wide variety of all-natural energy bars made with just a handful of minimally-processed ingredients.
RX Bars, Lara Bars, Kind Bars and several other brands are made with recognizable ingredients—no chemicals, no exceptions. When selecting a snack bar, aim for one with 250 calories or less made with ingredients you can pronounce and little to no added sugar.
Pictured: RX Bar Chocolate Sea Salt
Nut Butter To-Go6 of 11
Peanut and other nut butters are perennial staples in many healthy eaters' diets. Not only are they delicious, but they pack a nutritional punch in terms of protein. Toting a full jar to the office or gym, however, isn't exactly convenient.
Enter portable packets, pouches and bars. Now meeting our protein requirements for the day while on-the-go is easier than ever. Look for single-serve packs of butter by the likes of Justin's, as well as bars incorporating nut butters from brands such as Enjoy Life! and CLIF.
Pictured: Justin's Squeeze Pack Classic Almond Butter
Superfood Mixes7 of 11
Though the number of hours in each day hasn't changed, it seems with each passing year we have more demands on our precious time. Adults focused on their health and nutrition have turned to companies like Daily Harvest for quick, convenient snacks and meals to have on-hand.
These superfood mixes are pre-portioned and arrive ready to pop in your freezer and then blend, soak or heat whenever you need a nutritious snack. With breakfast bowls, warming soups, smoothies and even good-for-you sundaes, the time-saving options are endless.
Pictured: Daily Harvest Mulberry + Dragonfruit Overnight Oats
Dried Chickpeas8 of 11
Move over, potato chips. These crunchy, crave-worthy snacks are our new favorite indulgence. Packed with plant protein, fiber, folate and the mineral manganese, who knew the humble garbanzo bean could be this tasty and nutritious?
As great way to get that satisfying salty snack "crunch" without sabotaging your healthy diet, look for roasted chickpeas that are heavy on flavorful spices, but light on oil and salt. Sprinkle them on top of salads in place of croutons, add them to your favorite trail mix or simply pop a few as a p.m. pick-me-up.
Pictured: Simply Balanced Sea Salt Roasted Chickpeas
Hemp Seeds9 of 11
These little seeds are a great source of protein, as well as fiber to assist with digestive issues and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids to help protect against cancer. Not to mention, the oil in hemp seeds also promotes healthy skin. Talk about tiny but mighty!
Try sprinkling hemp seeds on salads, mixing them into yogurt or blending them into smoothies–all are great ways to enjoy these nutritional powerhouses.
Pictured: Nutiva Organic Hempseed
Not Your Father's Jerky10 of 11
Another easily portable snack, jerky has been around for years but has earned a reputation for being fatty and loaded with salt and unhealthy preservatives. Today, it's getting a modern makeover with lean cuts of meat, high-quality ingredients and innovative flavor combinations–think mango habanero and pink peppercorn.
Make sure you keep this protein-packed snack on the healthier side by choosing a brand that uses lean, grass-fed beef or even turkey, chicken or pork, as well as limited salt and no preservatives.
Pictured: Country Archer Mango Habanero Beef Jerky