Best Gaming Snacks: That Promote Mental Clarity, That Won’t Cause A Sugar Crash, And Won’t Ruin Your Gaming Equipment
A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded, “A single session of video game play in healthy male adolescents is associated with an increased food intake, regardless of appetite sensations.” So, if you’re going to eat more when playing video games whether you’re hungry or not (as the study suggests), you might as well eat snacks that will promote mental clarity, won’t cause a sugar crash, and won’t ruin your gaming equipment. You’re probably thinking, easier said than done, right?
Well, no so fast. There are a bunch of healthy and delicious snack options out there that are ideal for gamers. Foods that are easy to grab (and can be eaten with one hand), are relatively grease free (to avoid oily and gunk filled fingers), and can be eaten quickly (between loading times and bathroom breaks) as the Lifehacker article, “Six Healthy Snacks You Can Eat While Gaming” points out.
Sticking with these guidelines, and taking into consideration that you’ll be gaming during different points in the day, we’ve come up with snacks for the morning, afternoon, and evening, which you can also eat anytime you want.
SNACKS THAT PROMOTE MENTAL CLARITY
Hardboiled Eggs: Eating eggs may boost brain power, according to a study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, with most of the benefits due to choline, which is an essential nutrient important for metabolization, according to The Healthy. You can make a bunch of hardboiled eggs at one time and peel them before you settle in to play your game so they’re ready for you when you’re ready for your snack. And make sure you eat the yolk since that’s where the brain-protective nutrients are.
Sushi (with fish): If you’re not one to cook for yourself and prefer to order in, sushi with any type of fish is a good way to go, especially since you can eat it with one hand. Try a salmon and avocado roll. Yes, it’s high in calories, but nearly all of them come from the one-two punch of healthy fats found in both the salmon and avocado, according to Eat This, Not That! Salmon and avocados are both good sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which help maintain function in the areas of the brain responsible for regulating mood and emotion.
Dark Chocolate: For those of you who were looking for more of a dessert/sweet type of snack, we’ve got you. As long as you eat dark chocolate in moderation, research suggests that it has brain-boosting powers including enhanced cognitive function and improved performance on memory activities. You only need one hand to open the chocolate bar (as long as you use your teeth to help you), or you can rip it open prior to starting your gaming session. Then when you’re craving a snack, peel back the dark chocolate bar packaging in tiny increments as you eat so you don’t get chocolate all over your hand.
SNACKS THAT WON’T CAUSE A SUGAR CRASH
Smoothie: Experts claim that eating every 3-4 hours will keep your blood sugar levels stable, which means helping you avoid sugar crashes. A smoothie is a solid, versatile option, as long as you remember that balancing carbohydrates, proteins, and fats is key for making sure you don’t experience a crash.
Tuna Sandwich: Researchers from Tufts University found that a piece of white bread paired with tuna (a great source of protein) led to a slower rise in blood sugar than white bread eaten alone, according to Well+Good. Just make sure to cut your tuna sandwich in half before you get back into the zone, and you’ll be good to go.
Popcorn: Popcorn has fiber and is low in calories, so if you’re craving a snack like chips or popcorn, choose popcorn. Just keep in mind that adding butter is what will make this a bad choice for your hands (since it’ll make them greasy and gross) and your health.
SNACKS THAT WON’T RUIN YOUR GAMING EQUIPMENT
When it comes to snacks that won’t ruin your gaming equipment, it’s probably best to avoid things like chips that will leave dust or grease behind. Healthier (and less greasy options) are…
Nuts: Almonds are loaded with protein, fiber, and magnesium and will give you energy to get through your day. Nuts like almonds and walnuts also won’t cause your blood sugar levels to spike and will provide a steady balance for you.
Veggies and Hummus: As long as you do a little prep ahead of time cutting up the veggies, you can enjoy this nutritious and filling snack that will increase your energy and won’t destroy your gaming gear. Of course, it’s never a bad idea to keep some napkins or towels around so you can wipe your hands off.
Packaged Items: We get it, we get it – you can’t always be one hundred percent healthy, and you don’t always have time to prep. That’s where pre-packaged items that allow you to eat without the food making direct contact with your hands come into play. While string cheese and beef jerky aren’t the healthiest choices on this list, they do provide protein and can be eaten without you needing to touch the actual food.