06/18/2015 11:48 EDT

Healthy Snack Ideas For The Office

Metro Canada

It happens every day around 2:30 p.m., give or take: your brain tells you you're tired and hungry, and you don't feel like doing any more work.

Finding the perfect afternoon snack is crucial to your daily productivity, experts say, but when's the best time to chow down?

"To ward off hunger, retain focus and keep blood sugar levels stable, it’s best to eat every three or four hours," says Cara Rosenbloom, a registered dietitian of Words To Eat By and an in-house dietitian with Metro. "If lunch is at noon, an afternoon snack at 3 to 4 p.m. is a good idea. A balanced snack will carry you through until dinner time, and prevent that gnawing hunger that makes you overeat at dinner because you’ve gone too long without food."

Of course, eating healthy any time of the day is beneficial, but when it comes to snacks, don't aim for sugary, salty and processed ones.

"It would be ideal if all offices had central fruit baskets and ongoing trays of sliced vegetables. In reality, jujubes are more likely," she says, adding that you should aim for keeping 80 per cent of your work diet clean and 20 per cent for indulgence — maybe a latte, office cake or a doughnut in the morning.

Rosenbloom says to avoid overeating, you should also make sure you have your own container or small bowl for your snack.

"Avoid eating out of a communal bowl, large bag or box, because it’s too difficult to estimate portion size. Instead, use small containers or snack bags to divide bulk items into single-serve portions."

In May, we teamed up with Rosenbloom and Metro for an Instagram takeover featuring daily healthy snack ideas. Head over to our page to see the rest of them and check out 10 of our favourites below.

Photo gallery Best Snack Ideas For The Office See Gallery