‘Snacking’ is Not a Swear Word!
Some of us are better than others but let’s face it, we all love a good snack now and again.
Saying the word ‘Snack’ almost feels like I’m swearing at times because so many diets have (wrongly) tried to teach us that snacking is bad. Actually, I approve of the grazing, or little and often eating approach because for many of us it can be easier to judge how much you should eat and it seems more purposeful than eating a huge meal because (in theory) we snack when we feel hungry, so the energy is put straight to good use. Don’t underestimate how powerful your perception of food is. If you view food solely as fuel (as many athletes must), then some of the deeper and more complex issues that we have with food are no longer a problem (i.e. over-eating, eating when we are not hungry). For the majority, we have a passion for food, and take pleasur it its taste, texture and colour – so living off energy gels is not going to do it for us!
When Snacking Goes Bad
Sadly there are so many snack-type products out on the market that are blatantly unhealthy such as sweets, and other products that market themselves as being ‘healthy snacks’ but are actually only going to worsen your hunger pains in the long run (I’m thinking high sugar cereal bars). So this is the first hurdle some snack fans fall over.
The second hurdle is often preparation. I love to have an evening snack. When there’s a good show on TV, there is nothing criminal about grabbing a snack (as long as you don’t do that all day long!). The problem is you have cooked dinner, and you’re looking for a quickie food fix. Nobody wants to invest too long in the evening creating a health masterpiece for a snack. We want to grab and go back to the comfy sofa. Preparation and a little thought is the key to avoiding the snack minefield of pre-packed foods and sweets that our tastebuds are craving.
We know there is a healthier way!!Here are some healthy, speedy snacks that you can easily prepare (in no particular order)
My Favourite 5
1.Sliced Apple & Nut/Seed Butter
(I love dunking apple slices into a small bowl of warmed sunflower seed butter – even better if both are organic!)
2. Full Fat Greek Yoghurt with frozen blueberries, cherries and dusted with cinammon
(The natural fat in the yoghurt will help your body absorb the fat soluble vitamins from the tangy berries, and cinammon goes with everything in my book!). Sorry to those who are not dairy fans.
3. Hot Banana, coconut milk, and cocoa (and a sprinkle of cayenne pepper!?)
We all know banana and coconut are a great flavour combo but I like to add a bit of dark chocolate or pure cocoa powder into the mix, or even cayenne pepper for a kick!
Banana also has a nice side effect of being a natural sleeping pill (aiding seratonin etc)
4. The humble boiled egg (free range pelase!)
A controversial choice for some maybe but I needed a more transportable snack in my top 5, and this is The king of snacks when it comes to packing a nutritional punch.
5. Avocado drizzled with fresh lemon juice
Avocado makes a great food for mixing with other things but sticking to the snacks approach, an avocado is easy to slice open (in half) and dig in with a spoon. Not everyone can eat an avocado straight (due to the high fat content) – I like a refreshing drizzle of lemon juice.
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