10 Holistic Ways To Give Your Snack Shelf A Wellness Glow-Up
Snacking strategically can be an integral part of your daily healthful eating regimen. Nourishing bites packed with protein, fiber, and fat can keep you feeling great all day long—plus serve as a tasty way to diversify your diet.
To avoid aimless noshing, while promoting balance and healthy habits—it's all about optimizing your snack shelf! That's right, by appealing to your senses, creating a convenient organizational system, and opting for nutritious choices, you can easily upgrade your snack shelf and give both your pantry and body a vibrant glow!
Beyond good-for-you bites (and the usual nonperishable staples), below you'll find tips and tricks to holistically make the most out of your snack space:
1. Make it visually beautiful.
Worry less about having a picture-perfect snack pantry and more about finding an organizational system that pleases you from both a functional and aesthetic perspective. Everyone has different preferences when it comes to organization, so find a method that appeals most to you, and go from there.
For starters, we all know that clutter takes up space that can manifest as stagnant energy—physically, emotionally, and mentally. That's where lovely storage and organization bins come into play. Straw bins, stacked baskets, negative space (things need respite, too), clear containers, drawer separators, double cabinets, labels, and a dedicated cookbook nook are some of the many tools to keep your mind, shelf, and heart at ease.
2. Use healthy containers.
The types of containers you choose in your pantry can not only help keep things organized and lovely but also protect the health of your body and the planet. Turning to safe and practical containers that keep toxins from entering our food is a vital aspect of sustainable living. Some eco-friendly ideas for a sustainable snack shelf include canning jars, high-quality ceramic containers, silicone bags, bees' wrap, reusable bowl covers, and stainless-steel bowls, to name a few.
3. Create a storage ritual.
Just as you would allocate some precious time to washing, rinsing, and storing fresh produce in the fridge (if applicable) after a tour to your local farmers' market—the same tip process applies to your snack shelf. If you tend to buy bulk or unpackaged foods—think nuts, seeds, dried fruit, grains, herbs, spices, legumes, crackers—try storing them in their respective containers (labels and all) as soon as you get home, for a satisfying finale to your sustainable shopping trip. You can also divide your goodies into everyday jars (the larger ones) and snacking containers for a quick but smart grab-and-go bite throughout the week.
4. Embrace the six tastes.
Ayurvedic tradition splendidly suggests it's important to include a variety of tastes (rasa in Sanskrit) in the foods we eat, for the proper balance of mind, body, and spirit. These are known as the "six tastes" in Ayurveda, which include pungent, salty, sweet, sour, astringent, and bitter. Through the lens of the six tastes, you can opt for a more diversified snack shelf that not only supports your well-being but can also keep your daily routine more interesting.
Some ideas to get you started in your six-taste pantry journey include chickpeas (astringent), dates (sweet), coffee (bitter), seaweed (salty), pickles (sour), and ginger (pungent). Mix and match as you please for a well-rounded snacking experience.
5. Seeds and nuts go a long way.
These mighty edibles are an essential addition to any wellness-inspired snack shelf. Roasted, raw, or blended into butter, nuts and seeds are nutrient powerhouses that can last up to three months outside of the fridge, making them a convenient option to keep on hand for a delicious jolt of nutrition. If you're looking to nutty up your shelf, try making one of these flavored nut butter recipes.
6. Add mood-stimulating colors.
Most health and nutrition experts you speak to will recommend eating a wide-variety of colorful foods for your overall health. What's more, color psychology indicates different hues can affect mood, improve health, and even influence behavior. While different perceptions and reactions toward color are often subjective or ingrained in culture and experience, color can be a powerful tool for promoting overall well-being.
For a color-inspired snack shelf, think in terms of depth, purpose, and scale. Depending on its size, you might want to consider colors, shades, and textures that add a sense of spaciousness (i.e., white, cream), brightness (i.e., orange, yellow), coolness (i.e., blue, purple), or calmness (i.e., pink), to name a few. Get creative and start looking for ways to make your snack space a sensory-stimulating fete!
7. Don't forget the treats!
8. Approach the process mindfully.
Zen author and teacher Cheri Huber's well-known adage, How you do anything is how you do everything, couldn't ring more true about how we approach every aspect of our lives—including our snack pantry! Beyond mindfully considering what goes inside the shelf (food, containers, decor, labels, dividers, etc.), it's equally important to reflect upon your relationship to such a space. Does it bring you joy? Does it bring you a sense of excitement when you think about this corner in your home?
Indeed, your snack shelf can be lackluster or an opportunity to explore deeper aspects of yourself (yes, really). A few questions to ponder: Do you take a moment to pause and thoughtfully enjoy your nibble (even grab-and-go snacks deserve a few seconds of mindfulness)? How does your attitude toward your pantry reflect your larger attitude toward life?
9. Pave the way to making brighter choices.
Setting up your snack shelf for success involves some thoughtful planning and self-reflection. From the endless types of containers and colors to the variety of healthful foods you can pick from, your well-stocked snack space should match your lifestyle, dietary needs, and habits. Are you trying to add more plant-based protein to your lunch menu? Reorganize your shelf to keep those canned staples front and center. Need a quick dose of self-love? Post a sticky note in a visible space with your favorite affirmation or mantra. Are you looking to use those natural sweetener alternatives you bought for your next baking feat? You get the idea.
10. Energy goes where variety flows.
The thread that weaves together most of these tips comes down to three words: intention, awareness, and variety. Giving your snack shelf a wellness glow-up requires you to be aware of the diversity of elements, foods, and practices that best suit your needs. Ultimately, it's about elevating something seemingly mundane to extraordinary by paying close attention to why you want to bring more magic to your snacking experience and then going after it with gusto.