A Yogurt Fruit Bowls Near Me is a small service of food and generally eaten between meals. Snacks come in a variety of forms including packaged snack foods and other processed foods, as well as items made from fresh ingredients at home.
Traditionally, snacks are prepared from ingredients commonly available in the home without a great deal of preparation. Often biscuits, chocolate, cold cuts, fruits, leftovers, nuts, popcorn, sandwiches, and sweets are used as snacks. The Dagwood sandwich was originally the humorous result of a cartoon character's desire for large snacks. With the spread of convenience stores, packaged snack foods became a significant business.
Snack foods are typically designed to be portable, quick, and satisfying. Processed snack foods, as one form of convenience food, are designed to be less perishable, more durable, and more portable than prepared foods. They often contain substantial amounts of sweeteners, preservatives, and appealing ingredients such as chocolate, peanuts, and specially-designed flavors (such as flavored potato chips).
Beverages, such as coffee and tea, are not generally considered snacks although they may be consumed along with or in lieu of snack foods.
A snack eaten shortly before going to bed or during the night may be called a "bedtime snack", "late night snack", or "(mid)night snack"
In the United States, a popular snack food is the peanut. Peanuts first arrived from South America via slave ships and became incorporated into African-inspired cooking on southern plantations. After the Civil War, the taste for peanuts spread north, where they were incorporated into the culture of baseball games and vaudeville theaters.
Along with popcorn (also of South American origin), snacks bore the stigma of being sold by unhygienic street vendors. The middle-class etiquette of the Victorian era (1837–1901) categorized any food that did not require proper usage of utensils as lower-class.
Pretzels were introduced to North America by the Dutch, via New Amsterdam in the 17th century. In the 1860s, the snack was still associated with immigrants, unhygienic street vendors, and saloons. Due to loss of business during the Prohibition era (1920-1933), pretzels underwent rebranding to make them more appealing to the public. As packaging revolutionized snack foods, allowing sellers to reduce contamination risk, while making it easy to advertise brands with a logo, pretzels boomed in popularity, bringing many other types of snack foods with it. By the 1950s, snacking had become an all-American pastime, becoming an internationally recognized emblem of middle American life.
Government bodies, such as Health Canada, recommend that people make a conscious effort to eat more healthy, natural snacks - such as fruit, vegetables, nuts, and cereal grains – while avoiding high-calorie, low-nutrient junk food.
A 2010 study showed that children in the United States snacked on average six times per day, approximately twice as often as American children in the 1970s. This represents consumption of roughly 570 calories more per day than U.S. children consumed in the 1970s.
A Tufts University Department of Psychology empirical study titled "Effect of an afternoon confectionery snack on cognitive processes critical to learning" found that a consumption of a confectionery snack in the afternoon improved spatial memory in the study's sample group, but in the area of attention performance it had a mixed effect.
Discretion should be used to determine whether one snack is a better choice than another based on nutrient density. The Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) establishes the amount of nutrients required daily to avoid deficiencies and allow the body to function properly. Knowing that one snack has more nutrients than another per calorie can help provide required nutrients without exceeding the discretionary calorie allowance. When analyzing the ratio of nutrients to calories in foods, the caloric level must be lower than the nutrient level in order for it to be nutrient dense. Otherwise, it could potentially cause a deficiency in an essential nutrient.
In contrast to nutrient density, energy density is the amount of calories per gram of food. For instance, snacking on two scoops (1 c.) of chocolate ice cream contains 287 calories per 132 grams making the energy density 2.17. As an alternative, one could have a snack containing celery (2 stalks), peanut butter (1 Tbsp), milk (1 c.), and an apple, which would contain similar calorie content (281 calories), but weigh 478 grams making the energy density .59. Other alternatives include salads, fruits, nuts, frozen yogurt, and cereal (1 c.) without milk. Especially when one's under pressure or frustrated, a low energy density is preferable because the food has a low ratio of calories to grams, allowing one to consume more food per calorie. Choosing a healthy snack with lower energy density will increase the amount of food one can ingest, and thus increase satiation and satiety levels, while increasing nutrient intake compared to chocolate ice cream.
There are several forms of unhealthy snacking:
Not eating causes one form of unhealthy snacking. Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch claim in their book Intuitive Eating that the symptoms of starvation occur when the absence of eating is extended longer than a period of three to six hours. When the body undergoes a period of starvation, metabolism decreases and food cravings increase, causing a binge in eating high-carbohydrate foods. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is a chemical in the brain produced during periods of starvation that triggers the need for carbohydrates. After a bout of starvation, NPY causes an eating binge of carbohydrates in which one surpasses the daily allowance, causing weight gain. Ingesting carbohydrates causes an increase in serotonin production which cancels the production of NPY. The longer the starvation period, the more intense food cravings become, making it difficult to follow the five characteristics of healthy snacking.
Emotional eating occurs when people use food to cope with emotional triggers including boredom, procrastination, excitement, love, frustration, stress, and mild depression.
Eating for convenience and food availability occurs when people choose to snack on energy-dense food that is readily available. In some areas the only food available is processed food, which is energy-dense and low in essential nutrients. Sizer and Whitney say, “A steady diet of such foods can easily lead to both obesity and malnutrition”. These foods are high in calories, fat, salt, and have a very low nutrient density.