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Health Tip

Healthy Snacks with Wasabi Peas

If you crave something that savory and crunchy but don’t want the fat and calories of regular chips or crackers, wasabi peas provide the perfect alternative. These green peas are roasted and covered with a spicy wasabi sauce; they’re nutrient dense, tasty and versatile. They may be eaten on their own or added to other food for the perfect blend of healthy and yummy. In particular, they make an excellent garnishment when you’re looking for something to add just a little “extra” to your meal. By replacing empty calories with protein and fiber, they can help you feel better and lose weight. Try wasabi peas in these or other dishes.

  • Trail Mix—Throw some wasabi peas in with other snack staples such as walnuts (roasted, no salt), dried fruit (cranberries are an excellent option), and seeds like pumpkin seeds. This will give you a mixture that’s crunchy, chewy, sweet and spicy all at once. Among other nutritional benefits you’ll get fiber, protein and healthy fats to keep you going all day.
  • Salads—Top your favorite salad with a scattering of these peas. We recommend lettuce and other leafy greens, carrots, broccoli, and tomatoes. They make an excellent substitute for croutons, giving you that little bit of crunch with fiber and protein in the place of sodium and white flour.
  • Soups—Again, instead of crumbling flour and salt based crackers over a cup of hot delicious soup, use wasabi peas. Healthy soups include chicken noddle, vegetable soup or tomato soup, which is rich in lycopene. Although homemade is always best, if you need to get your soup from a can then look one that’s low in fat and sodium.
  • Celery Sticks—For a fun and healthy snack, spread a little cream cheese (low fat variety, of course) inside a fresh stick of celery and sprinkle with wasabi peas. Experiment with variations of this by also adding sunflower and sesame seeds (omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E), or by using natural peanut butter instead of cream cheese. You can think of it as an adult version of the childhood snack which usually features peanut butter with raisin “ants” marching across.

Wasabi peas pack a powerful nutritional punch. Just half a cup contains 5 grams of protein and 1 gram of fiber, but only 130 calories. They do have some sodium, 3% of your daily allowance or 95 milligrams, sugar (4 grams) and fat (1.5 grams). Besides their spicy flavor and exciting crunch, they can help you wean yourself off unhealthy and high fat snacks, which is one more step towards having the diet and lifestyle that you want.



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