Love a little graze in between meals? You and me both! Our bodies need a constant supply of nutrients for it to function at optimal levels all throughout the day. When you energy dips, it can be a sign that you are in need of a booster from a good source of food, to keep you going.
Though which so many readily available options, often costing us less than a healthier alternative, it can be hard to stick to a balanced diet! For a much as I believe you should never completely rule out your favourite ‘naughty but nice’ snacks, it is sensible to leave them as a special treat rather than a regular choice. So to help you come up with new and tasty ways to munch before your lunch (see what I did there) I have created a video of a few of my sweet and savoury snack ideas!
To give you more of an insight into why these choices are much better for you, I thought I would explain in more detail for you here.
Now do not take this to the extreme (been there, done that) but it is useful when first buying a product to check the list of ingredients. The list is put together with the main ingredients first, so it is important to watch out for sugar, salt, trans fats, artificial colours and preservatives. These should be as low on the list as possible or not there at all for the product to be as beneficial to your health as possible. If they are within the first three ingredients, avoid consuming on a regular basis.
Find out more about labelling at http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Goodfood/Pages/food-labelling.aspx
High Protein Snacks
Needed for muscle repair and growth, as well as maintaining optimal health, protein should be an essential part of your every day diet. Aim for around 1 gram per pound of body weight and vary your sources of protein throughout your day. In between having whole food sources.
I absolutely adore Quest bars as they taste so incredible yet provide really useful resources for your body (not ashamed to admit I am obsessed with Quest! – other brands are available). A wonderful homemade snack would be making some classic houmous, to which I have created a recipe for here.
To read more about the benefits of protein go to my other blog post ‘The Power of Protein’
Hopefully you will have been made aware by now that fats are another essential component to your nutritional intake. Fats provide support for brain and heart health, as well as aiding the absorption of important vitamins A, D, E & K. They are not to be shammed at all, so make sure to feature them in your food choices.
My favourite way to get good fats in is through nuts and nut butters (enjoyed in moderation). I love smothering some rice cakes with Pip & Nut or dipping an apple into a pool of this gorgeous stuff. Or if I am off to watch a film at the cinema, I adore tucking into some Propercorn Smooth Peanut & Almond popcorn!
Energy Boosting Carbs
As I have explained in a previous myth buster blog post, carbs are NOT the enemy. They are our bodies main source of energy and are needed to support hormonal balance. Make sure that you get in an adequate amount of good carbohydrates, that have a good level of fibre to help with digestive health.
A high carbohydrate snack is best enjoyed around workouts, so that the body can use the glucose to supply the body with energy and repair storages after training.
My favourite is a creating a healthy smoothie or baking some healthy treats.