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10 Healthy Chinese New Year Snacks You Can Enjoy Guilt-Free

 

Snacking is inevitable when you're visiting friends and family during CNY, and mostly all those decadent snacks such as pineapple tarts and bak kwa are unhealthy to be munched on. If you’re worried about being tempted by calorie-filled CNY delight, here's how you can add a healthy spin to the snack table this year.

1. Sunflower Seed

Sunflower seeds are rich in Vitamin E, magnesium, B Vitamins like thiamine, selenium, and more. It helps lower high blood pressure, prevent migraine headaches, maintain thyroid function, promote skin and eye health. Moreover, it is also known to prevent inflammation and chronic diseases, making it an ideal healthy low-calorie snack for weight loss that you can eat to start your prosperous new year. Recommended serving: ¼ cup (28g) - 170kcal.

2. Pumpkin Seed

Pumpkin seeds are a great source of protein and unsaturated fats, including omega-6 fatty acids. It also contains a variety of nutrients, including magnesium, manganese, and antioxidants that offer health benefits ranging from wound healing to preventing chronic diseases. What’s more, they are a natural source of the amino acid tryptophan which helps with sleep. Enjoy it during the daytime with zero guilt & sleep tight during the night! Recommended serving: ¼ cup (28g) - 151kcal.

3. Roasted Nuts 

As a substitute for foods high in saturated fat and sugar (such as biscuits, chocolates, or cakes), nuts can be a good choice. Nuts are good sources of protein, healthy fat, fibers, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Yes! It’s truly superbly nutritious! There are a lot of choices when it comes to healthy nuts, for example, almond, walnut, cashew nut, pecan, Brazil nut, pistachios, and macadamia. You don’t need to waste time thinking about what else you can serve to visitors. Get all of them! Remember don’t choose nuts that are overly roasted, they may contain carcinogens and free radicals while most nutrients are lost! Fred not, Love Earth roasted nuts are roasted at a low temperature to retain the optimal nutrients and preserve freshness! But like anything, moderation is key. Recommended serving: ⅓ Cup/1 handful (30g) - 167~223kcal.

4. Trail Mix

Trail mix sounds like a great trade-off for highly processed chip-type snacks. Despite the fact that trail mix can be a healthy, filling, and convenient snack, what type you choose is crucial. The base of any nutritious trail mix should be nuts and dried fruit. Both of these foods have a lot going for them and are an upgrade over the typical ultra-processed snacks. Pieces of evidence assert that increasing consumption of both nuts and dried fruit helps reduce the risk of chronic diseases. Steer clear of varieties high in added sugar or sodium. Recommended serving: ⅓ Cup/1 handful (30g) - 94~198kcal.

5. Whole Grain Crackers

Most crackers in the market are packed with potentially inflammatory ingredients such as gluten, unhealthy oils like palm oil and canola oil, synthetic vitamins, and artificial additives. No worries. Love Earth Five Grain Cracker has got your back. You can't beat the purity of this recipe: Organic Pumpkin Seed, Organic Sunflower Seed, Organic Cane Sugar, Puffed Brown Rice, Himalaya Rock Salt, Rice Bran Oil, Organic Buckwheat, Organic White Sesame Seed, and Maltose. With quality and organic ingredients, it makes this cracker a great choice over other crackers. Recommended serving: 15 Cubes (35g) - 162kcal.

6. Black Sesame Cracker

Besides Five Grain Cracker, our Black Sesame Cracker is also equally satisfying without any added artificial ingredients. They are brimming with antioxidants, fibers, and healthy fatty acids which protect us from diseases and promote regular bowel movement. In addition, it reduces your appetite so you eat less over the festive season. Recommended serving: 15 Cubes (35g) - 194kcal.

7. Homebaked Sweet Potato Chip

The taste of many popular chips is undeniable, but they are highly processed and contain unhealthy ingredients, such as sugar and colorants. Let’s try making one at home! Sweet potato chips are a good source of vitamin A which is essential for healthy vision and they provide more fiber than a similar serving of traditional chips. This healthy alternative squelches your craving for chips without going totally overboard! Recommended serving: 28g - ~130g.

8. Air-popped Popcorn
Preparing popcorn correctly is the key to keeping it healthy. Rather than buying “movie-theater butter” popcorn, which is loaded with unhealthy fat and sodium, start popping your own! Since popcorn is a whole grain, its filling fiber will help you stay fuller longer. Popcorn is also loaded with disease-fighting antioxidants. If you want to create a pop of flavor, sprinkle cinnamon, mix cocoa and stevia, or sprinkle fresh rosemary and garlic powder. Recommended serving: 24g - ~94kcal.

9. Edamame

Another irresistible snack - steamed or boiled edamame, filled with a hefty dose of fiber, protein, omega-3 fats, and a host of antioxidants. Due to its excellent nutrient profile, it plays a role in maintaining metabolism, lowering blood pressure, and overall balance in our bodies. As you split the pods open to retrieve the nutritious bean, you eat more slowly, leaving you more satisfied and less likely to overeat. Recommended serving: ½ cup - ~100kcal.

10. Seaweed

It turns out that seaweed is good for your ticker. Among health-conscious eaters, seaweed holds a reputation as a nutrient-rich superfood. Seaweed is stuffed with vitamins and protein, iodine, iron, and calcium. It helps in maintaining thyroid function, protects your body from cell damage, and boosts weight loss. Aside from consuming it directly, you can also try making Seaweed Spring Roll Crisps, which is one of the easiest air-fried CNY snacks and relatively healthy! Crunch with zero guilt! Recommended serving: 10g - 5~30kcal.

 

heartFriendly Tips

 

 

  • Always choose food that has been minimally processed.
  • Consider bringing healthy snacks to share when you visit someone.
  • Enjoy every bite. No matter how delicious everything looks, eat slowly.
  • Homemade food is usually much healthier than store-bought. Consider making some Chinese New Year healthy snacks when possible.
  • Moderation is key. Savor the benefits but don’t go excessive!
  • Drink water or tea while eating to limit the beverage calories and prevent you from overeating.

We, at Love Earth Organic, wish everyone a Happy & Prosperous Chinese New Year!

Written by: Foo Jia Qi 
BSc (Hons) Nutrition With Wellness 
UCSI University

Reviewed by: Jasmine Lim
Love Earth Organic Nutritionist
Bachelor of Science Degree in
Dietetics (major) & Food Science (minor)
Iowa State University, USA