Many of us don't think about planning snacks. Snacks just happen. And too often that means we find ourselves standing in front of the vending machine, pulling through the drive-through or staring at the chips and cookies in the pantry.

The Tufts Health & Nutrition Letter recently reported that snacks now account for a quarter of the average American's calorie intake. Essentially, snacks add up to a fourth meal, so it's important to make sure your snacks have nutritional value, not just empty calories.

Here are 10 healthy snacks to try—and be sure to pack a snack when you or your kids are on the go:

  • Apple or pear wedges with peanut butter
  • Low-fat mozzarella cheese stick (string cheese) with whole-wheat crackers (look for whole wheat as the first ingredient listed)
  • Whole-wheat wrap spread with hummus and topped with turkey lunch meat (look for nitrate free brands), lettuce and sunflower seeds or pine nuts
  • Nuts (about the amount that fits in the palm of your hand) and a piece of fresh fruit
  • Dried fruit (look for brands without added sugar or preservatives)
  • Plain or vanilla nonfat or low-fat yogurt with berries and nuts
  • Butter-free popcorn, with a sprinkling of parmesan cheese
  • Baby carrot sticks with low-fat dressing for dipping
  • Turkey roll-ups made with turkey slices spread with pesto and sprinkled with sunflower seeds and chopped lettuce and cherry tomatoes
  • Celery sticks spread with peanut butter and topped with nuts or raisins

How do you snack smart on the go? We want to know. Enter a tip and you could win a free sample pack of Fruit Bliss’ preservative-free dried fruit snacks!

Here's how it works: Share your favorite healthy snack on the HealthyWomen Facebook page ( It's that simple!

Entries must be received by 12 a.m. EST, on Sunday, September 2, 2012. Three winners will be chosen to sample Fruit Bliss’ sampler pack of soft-dried fruit snacks. Winners will be notified via Facebook no later than September 5, 2012. Entries are subject to appear on HealthyWomen's Facebook and Twitter channels.

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