Vending Machines: What Are Your Favorite Letter/Number Combinations?

vending-machine-graphicSooner or later you’ll have your next sharing moment with a vending machine – you share your money and the machine shares its calories.

Vending machines are everywhere – down the hall from your office or around the corner from your hotel room, in hospital waiting rooms, in train stations, and calling your name on road trips. They call your name when you’re especially vulnerable – when you’re stressed, tired, bored, anxious, and your blood sugar is traveling south – all of which means the sugar, fat, and salt junk food allure is really hard to overcome.

When a vending machine calls your name, choose wisely.  There are good, better, and best choices to be made.  You can almost always find packages of nuts, popcorn, pretzels, or dried fruit along with the packaged sweet or crunchy calories.

Be careful of choices with too much sugar, especially if you’re driving.  A big time sugar hit may give you quick energy but more than likely it will be followed by a drop in your blood sugar levels that could possibly make you sleepy, grouchy, unfocused, and hungry for more sweet and fatty food.

No Choice Is Perfect; Make The Best Choice For You

Your choice depends on what you want:  protein or sweet satisfaction; fill-you-up fiber or salty crunch.  Here are some common choices so you can compare calories, fat, carbs, and protein:


  • Baked! Lays Potato Chips (original), 1 package, 130 calories, 2g fat, 26g carbs, 2g Protein
  • Baked Doritos, Nacho Cheese, 1 bag (38.9g):
170 calories, 5g fat, 29g carbs, 3g protein
  • Cheez-It Baked Snack Crackers (Snack Pak):
180 calories, 9g fat, 20g carbs, 4g protein
  • Ruffles Potato Chips, 1 package (1.5 oz):
240 calories, 15g fat, 23g carbs, 3g protein
  • Cheetos, Crunchy, snack size bag (1 oz): 
150 calories, 10g fat, 13g carbs, 2g protein
  • Sun Chips Original, 1 package:
210 calories, 10g fat, 28g carbs, 3g protein
  • Snyder’s of Hanover Mini Pretzels, snack size: 160 calories, 0g fat, 35g carbs, 4g protein
  • White Cheddar Cheese Popcorn, Smartfood, 1 package: 120 calories, 8g fat, 11g carbs, 2g protein


  • Planters Sunflower Kernels, 1 package (1.75 oz): 290 calories, 25g fat, 9g carbs, 11g protein
  • Planters Salted Peanuts, 49g (1.75oz): 290 calories, 25g fat, 8g carbs, 13g protein


  • Mini Chips Ahoy!, snack pack (56g): 270 calories, 13g fat, 38g carbs, 3g protein
  • Frosted Strawberry Pop-Tarts (2 pastries): 
410 calories, 10g fat, 75g carbs, 4g protein
  • Hostess Fruit Pie, apple: 470 calories, 20g fat, 70g carbs, 4g protein
  • Fig Newtons, 1 package: 200 calories, 4g fat, 40g carbs, 2g protein
  • Quaker Chewy Low-Fat Granola Bar, Chocolate Chunk, 1 bar: 
90 calories, 2g fat, 19g carbs, 1g protein
  • Nature Valley Granola Bar, Crunchy Oats and Honey, 2 bars: 190 calories, 6g fat, 29g carbs, 4g protein


  • Skittles (original), 2.17 oz:
240 calories, 2.5g fat, 56g carbs, 0g protein
  • Twix, 2 cookies:
250 calories, 12g fat, 34g carbs, 2g protein
  • 3 Musketeers, king size:
200 calories, 6g fat, 36g carbs, 1g protein
  • Peanut M&Ms, 1 pack:
250 calories, 13g fat, 30g carbs, 5g protein
  • Snickers, regular size: 250 calories, 12g fat, 33g carbs, 4g protein

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