Snacks can be one of the worst culprits that will undo all your healthy eating and hard work at the gym. However, if used correctly snacks can also be a great tool to help you curb cravings, keep your metabolism going and boost your energy levels, all while keeping your waistline slim. That’s why in my F.I.T. programs I’ve included lots of delicious healthy low GI snacks and recipes that are perfect for any healthy eating plan. If you aren’t quite sure what snacks you should be eating, I’ve given you some healthy snack ideas below that will help curb most cravings.
You have a sweet tooth and find it impossible to resist naughty food
Some people just crave something sweet, especially in the afternoon or after dinner. Rather than reaching for a packet of sweets or a large block of chocolate, try eating some these healthy snacks instead. They will help curb your sugar cravings without the added tooth decay, insulin spike and sugar crash.
- Frozen berries
- 1 banana with a teaspoon of almond butter
- Organic dark chocolate (a few small squares)
- Or why not even try one of these chocolate healthy homemade brownies
Need something crunchy?
If you’re craving something crunchy, do not, and I repeat, do not reach for those chips or crackers. These are just high calorie, processed food that aren’t going to provide you with any nutritional value what so ever. Instead, munch on some of these delicious crunchy snacks:
- Vegetable sticks and homemade dips (I have some great recipes here)
- Handful of raw, unsalted nuts (almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts)
- An apple with your favourite nut butter
When you're absolutely starving and need something to satisfy
Sometimes you have those moments during the day where you get so hungry you are ready to chew your arm off. This is when it can be easy to go overboard and before you know it you’ve eaten a days worth of food in one sitting. To fuel up and fill up, protein-rich snacks are best. Protein keeps you fuller for longer and also helps maintain your blood sugar. Some of these protein rich snacks should banish those hunger pains:
- A small tub of full-fat Greek yoghurt and a tablespoon of LSA
- Two hard-boiled eggs with a tablespoon of hummus
- Protein smoothie (from one of these recipes)
- Mini frittata egg muffins
Low on energy or need to concentrate?
Don’t get caught out by the mid-afternoon slump and then go for a sugar filled piece of cake or chocolate biscuit. Whilst you might get about two seconds of satisfaction, this will only lead to a sugar crash soon after. Try out some of these energy-boosting snacks instead:
- 1 banana with 8 almonds
- Homemade protein muffin (recipe here)
- Green smoothie
- A small handful of walnuts
- Mini chia seed pudding
I see a lot of people trying to fight off the late night snacking. Generally, I have my snack in between breakfast and lunch, and lunch and dinner. So, when dinner is done I’m not hungry. If you know you are one for grazing the pantry late at night, remove one of your snacks from the day and try one of these healthy alternatives:
- Herbal sleepy tea with a few almonds
- Frozen mango and a tablespoon of full-fat Greek yoghurt
- 1/3 fresh avocado with salt and pepper
- Homemade hot chocolate (made with unsweetened almond milk, raw cacao and stevia to sweeten)
You're on the run and don’t have time to eat
Never leave the house for a busy day without some healthy snacks in your bag. This can often lead to grabbing the quickest thing you find, which may not be so great for the waistline. My favourite handbag snacks are:
- Raw unsalted nuts
- Protein shake with a small handful of nuts
- A banana or apple
- Protein bliss balls (check out this recipe)
Remember, the way you fuel your body can have a major impact on your performance and getting that body you want. What are some of your favourite healthy snacks?