Healthy, on-the-go snack alternatives for the busy bee

Shikha Kinariwala, staff writer

Most mornings can start out with sleeping through alarms, and quickly get ready and rushing out the door to leave for school. Sometimes, you may completely forget to grab a bite to eat. This is an unfortunately familiar scenario for many high school students. Spending late nights doing school work and subsequently having very little time to give your body the nutrients to start your day is common for everyone.

Most stress-burdened students resort to postponing their morning meals to during the day, between hectic day-to-day activities. Having various extracurriculars crammed into a schedule takes a significant amount of time out of evenings, so students’ studying time is forced to spill over into mornings. On top of that, the small amount of time available to snack to compensate for the lack of breakfast usually excludes healthy food that can positively impact learning.

“I usually snack on a bag of chips or stuff that’s really unhealthy because I don’t have time to get or make healthy food, so I end up eating in the car or on the bus,” sophomore Parth Vakil said. “I usually don’t get a full meal because I always have a lot of homework and have to wake up early to study. I never really have time to finish my food at all, especially since school starts very early.”

Starting your day with enough energy to last the entire day is crucial. According to Time Health Magazine, skipping breakfast can lead to metabolic impairment, which could potentially raise the risk for obesity and type 2 diabetes. Not eating in the morning can also throw off your body’s natural rhythm.

“Usually during school, I’m not hungry, but when I do get hungry, even some sort of food as simple as fruit is a better alternative than a bag of chips,” senior Jennifer Cheung said. “It’s hard to have breakfast in the morning because you’re really tired and the last thing you want to do is get up really early and eat, but it’s vital that you get something to fuel you for the school day.”

Apart from just providing energy, certain breakfast foods like fruits and cereal are important sources of nutrition. According to, a whole grain cereal such as Kellogg’s All-Bran Complete Wheat Flakes provides calcium, vitamin B, iron, protein and fiber.

“If I had the time to eat [healthily] in the morning, I would definitely be more energetic throughout the day,” sophomore Stephen Hwang said. “[I would] have enough energy to actually listen in class and participate in activities more, so it’s kind of unfortunate that I don’t get enough time to eat [healthily] beforehand.”

Despite the ongoing stress of school and extracurriculars, there are a variety of different healthy do-it-yourself snacks you can make and keep at hand to take care of your body throughout the day. You can customize your recipes to fit your liking as well.  

“One thing I have a lot in the morning is smoothies,” Cheung said. “It’s really easy to make, you can cram proteins in one drink, and it’s very convenient to drink at school. There’s no recipe. You can get as creative as you want, and it’s pretty versatile in terms of ingredients.”

The benefits of eating healthy outweigh maintaining a diet of junk food in terms of health and lifestyle. Making good decisions about things students typically don’t pay much attention to, like breakfast, can make a greater impact than they realize.

“I think in general that a lot of people are discouraged from wanting to eat healthily because it can be overly time-consuming,” Cheung said. “Making good decisions for your body and health really spills over into the rest of your daily routine, and students should be encouraged to try because it can only have positive effects on life.”