Organizing your snack shelf is the key to healthy eating — here’s how

Snacking is a good thing. It can help tide you over between meals and prevent you from being so hungry you overeat later.

What you eat is important, though. Apples and almonds, which boast vitamins and nutrients, can help you feel satiated and energized, while potato chips and soda are full of empty calories and carbs.

Some snacks just have what it takes to fuel your body properly, and others don’t.

How can you ensure you’re reaching for the best option? Organizing your snack shelf may be key. Having certain foods front and center and occasional treats out of sight, out of mind can help you make healthier choices. You don’t have to go all-out like Marie Kondo to get the job done. Here are the top snack organizing tips to help you live a healthier lifestyle.

a wide shot of a large, full pantry
Annie Spratt/Unsplash

Presentation is everything

Place your healthy go-to snacks at eye-level

What’s on your snack shelf is important, but where you place it may be just as key. Put the healthy foods you love at eye level, like unsalted nuts, crunchy chickpeas, and dried, unsweetened fruits. There’s science to back up this snack organizing tip. Research shows that placing certain foods at eye level “nudges” people to eat them.

Make it functional for you

“Eye level” is going to be different for you than it was for the person who used to live in your home. Also, you may buy in bulk and have tall jars that don’t fit between two shelves. You don’t always have to rearrange your food to fit your cabinet. You can often rearrange your cabinets to fit your needs. See if you can adjust or remove some of the shelves in your cabinets (and fridge, for that matter) to create a snack shelf that helps you make the healthiest choices.

Make it visually appealing

Your snack shelf can be more than functional. Consider making it stylish, too. Put nuts in mason jars, which will also make it easier to see them. Place fresh fruit in colorful bowls. Experts share that you’re more likely to reach for healthy options when you love a color palette.  

snack shelf with glass jars

Food management

Have variety

Variety is the spice of life — literally. Appeal to every tastebud with snacks like apples (sweet), dark chocolate almonds (bitter), green tea (astringent), kale chips (salty), limes (sour), and a bag of popcorn sprinkled with cayenne (pungent). Having a bunch of different types of food will also prevent you from getting bored.

Don’t nix treats altogether

If you have a sweet tooth, you can still indulge it — and not just by eating fruit. Sure, foods like berries and apples have natural sugar and are Mother Nature’s candy. It’s a good idea to satisfy your sweet cravings with them. However, go ahead and put some of your favorite candies on your snack shelf. Depriving yourself may cause you to overdo it at a later time. Just put them somewhere that’s isn’t easy to reach or see, though, and consider getting pre-portioned versions of the food, like individually-wrapped candies.

Create a ritual

The last thing you want to do is reach for something only to find it expired. While many snacks on a traditional cabinet shelf may be non-perishable, it’s still a good idea to go through and ensure nothing has gone stale. If you have fruits and vegetables on your snack shelf, definitely check to make sure they’re still edible. Try to do this once per week before heading to the grocery store or ordering food online. It will help you figure out what you need and what you don’t. Also, if you realize you don’t eat a certain type of food, you can consider donating any unopened, unexpired cans or bottles.

Snacking is a great way to satisfy hunger cravings in between meals. You don’t want to reach for anything and everything, though. Opt for filling foods, like fruits and nuts, that have fiber, protein, and vitamins. These foods not only keep you satiated but also do wonders for your heart, gut, and even skin. That said, it can be hard to ignore cravings for not-so-healthy treats like chips and candy, particularly if you’re very hungry. Make things easier on yourself by trying some snack organizing tips that “nudge” you to make healthier choices. Putting your favorite nutritious snacks at eye level and creating a functional shelf can take the guesswork out of snacking. It’s okay to have some treats on hand, though. Just make them harder to see and consider opting for pre-portioned items.

BlissMark provides information regarding health, wellness, and beauty. The information within this article is not intended to be medical advice. Before starting any diet or exercise routine, consult your physician. If you don’t have a primary care physician, the United States Health & Human Services department has a free online tool that can help you locate a clinic in your area. We are not medical professionals, have not verified or vetted any programs, and in no way intend our content to be anything more than informative and inspiring.

Editors' Recommendations