Learn How to Snack Your Way to Weight Loss - Virtua Articles

Learn How to Snack Your Way to Weight Loss

Do you love to snack but fear the fat and calories that come with crunchy chips?

You don’t have to give up snack foods – even if you’re a healthy eater. You just have to make smart choices. Virtua registered dietitian Donna Wixted, RD, advises eating 2 snacks a day that are under 200 calories each.

If potato chips are your favorite, here’s a recipe for a crunchy, healthy potato chip you can make at home.

Microwave Potato Chips

What you’ll need:

2 large potatoes (russet, gold, red or sweet), scrubbed

Spices (salt, pepper, garlic or onion powder, dill, cayenne)

Cooking spray (such as Pam)

Parchment paper

Microwave-safe plate

Mandoline (food slicer)


  1. Slice the potatoes with a mandoline for a 1/16-inch thick (paper-thin) slice.
  2. Drop slices into cold water until ready to use (not necessary if using sweet potatoes).
  3. Remove slices from water and pat dry on paper towels, working in batches.
  4. Place parchment paper that’s been sprayed with cooking spray on a microwave-safe plate.
  5. Place potato slices on the parchment paper and season as desired.
  6. Cover with another piece of parchment paper that’s been sprayed with cooking spray (placing the sprayed side against the potatoes).
  7. Microwave the potatoes on high for around 5 minutes, checking every 60 seconds, until they’re lightly browned and slightly curled on the edges.
  8. Enjoy!

Find Healthy Snacks in the Store

When buying snacks in the store, READ THE LABEL for important factors that will help you choose a healthier snack:

  • Look at the “Nutrition Facts” on the label for fat, saturated fat and sodium: Food packaging can’t say “low-fat" or "low-sodium” unless the percent of daily value (PDV) is less than 5%.
  • Check ingredients: The first ingredient in a healthier snack should be whole grain (whole wheat, whole rye, corn), vegetables such as potatoes, carrots or beans, or whole nuts. Avoid “enriched” ingredients.
  • Follow the portion size: A healthier snack won’t be healthy if you eat 3 or 4 servings of it. Stick to the recommended portion size or buy portion-controlled snack bags when available.

Here are some healthier grab-and-go snacks you can find in your grocery store (we taste-tested and approved of all!):

Lesser Evil – Snack Chips and Sticks

Pop Chips

Terra Chips – Exotic Vegetable Chips

Blue Diamond 100-Calorie Almond Packs

Beanitos – Snack Chips

Wonderful Pistachios

Late July – Multigrain Tortilla Chips

Updated November 12, 2018

Snack Your Way to Weight Loss

Do you love to snack but fear the fat and calories that come with crunchy chips? Don’t give them up! Learn how to make smart snack choices – and see how to make your own healthy potato chips.

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