If you go for longer than 5 hours between meals you might sometimes need a snack. Most people who eat well balanced meals like on this blog don’t need to snack in-between. But here are some really easy snacks that give you carbohydrates (naturally sugar-containing foods like wholegrains or fruits) alongside protein/good fats (e.g. nuts, yoghurt, humous) for sustained slow-burn energy. Most of these foods are packed with nutrients to help you look and feel your best. Go for organic fruit and veg if you can – it helps promote growth of good bacteria in your tummy. If you don’t have time for breakfast some of these snacks can fit the bill – just make sure you get some fresh fruit/veg in.
- 2 fresh apricots or plums + 4 walnut halves.
- Medium pear + 8 almonds.
- Medium apple + dessertspoon sunflower seeds.
- Nectarine or peach + dessertspoon pumpkin seeds.
- Apple + generous teaspoon almond butter straight from the jar.
- Handful carrot/cucumber sticks or red pepper strips + tablespoon humous.
- 1-2 Nairns/Pattersons rough oatcakes* (available in gluten-free also) + crunchy no-sugar peanut butter.
- 1-2 oatcakes with generous topping of humous or lots of mashed avocado.
- 1-2 oatcakes with thick tahini (ideally a raw brand e.g. Carly’s, from health shops).
- 1-2 oatcakes + cottage cheese and a sprinkle of black pepper.
- Mouthful leftover cooked chicken, smoked fish + an apple, mandarin or pear afterwards.
- Handful berries + 2-3 heaped tbs natural organic yoghurt.
- 2 fresh plums/apricots + 3 heaped tbs dairy-free “yoghurt” e.g. Coyo, Abbot Kinney’s Almond Starter, or unsweetened soya yoghurt.
- Small ripe banana/half large banana blitzed with 1 cup natural yoghurt + generous pinch of turmeric or cinnamon.
- For a treat try a Nakd bar from Tesco/health shops (=nuts + dried fruit).
- For another treat try 1-2 squares of 80% chocolate + dessertspoon sunflower seeds or 8-10 hazelnuts. Not too often though – 70% chocolate still contains added sugar.*Not the sweet biscuit oatcakes which are loaded with sugar.
Now you get the idea – a great snack is a portion of slow-release carb (e.g. oats, whole fruit, carrot sticks) + high quality protein and/or good fats
Why these snacks are better for you
Carbohydrates are foods naturally high in sugars or with added sugars. Grains, root veg (potatoes, carrots) and almost all fruits are high in carbohydrates. Sugar, honey, fruit juice and white grains are even higher so aren’t a great choice in your regular diet. Carbs on their own (even from natural foods) give a quick rise in blood sugar that’s dangerous for your body. This promotes peaks and slumps in energy. But carbs combined with protein/good fats give you a better, longer-lasting slow-burn energy. Protein foods include meat, fish, beans, nuts, seeds, yoghurt, cheese, lentils and chickpeas. Great news if you want to look and feel your best for a long time to come.