The Ultimate Guide to Healthy Snacks
This post is by Claire Turnbull, a qualified nutritionist and all round health and fitness fan! Claire is an author, speaker and nutritionist in the media.
When we are hungry but not yet in need of a full meal – snacks come into play. Something to bridge the gap and fill the tummy until it’s time for something more substantial.
The problem is, many of the things people snack on are packed with sugar, salt and saturated fats like muffins, cereal bars, chippies and biscuits which really need to be considered as occasional treats rather than everyday options.
In my mind, a snack is a mini meal, an opportunity to get a boost of nutrition to keep you going and help you feel good, rather than being a whack of unhealthiness.
Here is a fantastic list of my favourite snacks:
- Fresh fruit and ¼ cup of unsalted nuts or seeds
- Fresh fruit with a slice of cheese, check out the delicious cheeses you could enjoy here
- A real vegetable wrap spread with light cream cheese and rolled up – YUM
- A peeled frozen banana – it is like ice-cream, but seriously good for you!
- Mini health shake – blend a handful of frozen berries, 1 tbsp of vanilla or chocolate protein powder and 1 cup of chilled water or low fat milk.
- Green smoothie or juices. You can find some great recipes here
- Unsweetened low fat yogurt with 1 tbsp of muesli or other breakfast cereal stirred through – this can also be a good ‘on the go’ snack if you have this in a small plastic container and use a chilly baggie
- Raw veggies box with a healthy dip such as hummus, veggie or yoghurt based dips rather than one based on cream cheese or sour cream.
- Smoked salmon on a wholegrain cracker with a slice of avocado
- Edamame beans
- A boiled egg
- A cup of veggie soup
- A handful of home popped corn, for more of a treat try these ones here
- Chopped apple, pear or banana and 2 tbsp of cottage cheese
- Wholegrain crackers with cottage cheese, tuna, salmon or hummus
- Homemade ENERGY balls or a homemade cereal bar – check out my recipes here
- Snack pack of sushi – go for brown rice if you can.
Homemade snacking combos – dried fruit, nuts and seeds.
Try these for starters:
3 Brazil nuts and 3 dried figs – a great dose of selenium and fibre
4 Walnuts + 2 Dried Apricots + 1 tbsp. of pumpkin seeds
6 Raw cashews + 1 tbsp. dried cranberries + 1 tbsp. pumpkin seeds
8-10 Almonds + 2 Figs + 1 tbsp. sunflower seeds
8 Almonds + 2 Brazils + 1 tbsp Goji berries + 1 tbsp Raw cocoa beans or cocoa nibs or a little 80% cocoa chocolate for a treat!
These portions are just a rough guide, the amount you personally need will vary. If you are watching your waistline though, aim to keep the total portion to about 1/4 - 1/3 cup or a very small handful.
For more ideas and inspiration on healthier happier living to make healthy happen in your life, check out Claire's website here.
- Craig Hopkins