Snacks – The good and the bad

Good ideas

  • Water: you might simply be thirsty when you think you’re hungry.
  • Mixed nuts and dried fruit or Trail mix: This combo has a good balance of all three macronutrients, with healthy fats and protein from nuts and carbs from dried fruit. Steer clear of nuts and fruits covered in chocolate, or even so-called ‘yoghurt’, which often is just another kind of chocolate.
  • A handful of almonds: Eating a handful of almonds or another type of nut for a snack is a simple way to fill up on protein.
  • Biltong: A high-protein snack, rich in iron that can satisfy your hunger and maintain your energy levels during the workday.
  • Egg Muffins or crustless quiches: Egg muffins are made by mixing eggs with vegetables and then baking them in a muffin tin. The main benefits are the protein from the eggs and fibre from the veggies.
  • Berries and yoghurt: Berries are not only highly nutritious but also a low-carb fruit choice. For a delicious, low-carb snack, combine 1/2 cup of blueberries with 2 tablespoons of full cream Greek yoghurt.

 

Bad ideas

  • Muffins: These are loaded with fat and sugar – even the ones that masquerade as ‘health’ muffins.
  • Chips: High in fat, high carbs, high GI … Don’t go there.
  • Fizzy drinks: Besides that, the fizziness can give you unpleasant side effects, the sugar is just plain bad. Want the sugar-free kind? Artificial sweeteners are even worse for you than sugar.
  • Fruit Juice or Iced Tea: These drinks are loaded with sugar. In fact, fruit juice and sweetened iced tea contains just as much sugar and calories as a sugary fizzy drink … and sometimes even more.

You’ve hit the 4 o’clock slump, and a deli or the garage convenience shop is around the corner. What will give you a healthy boost and help you stay energised and productive? Many snack foods available today are high in refined carbs and sugar, which can leave you feeling unsatisfied and craving more food.

Whatever you do, you need to choose something that will fill you up and increase your energy without railroading your healthy eating plan. As always, look for snacks high in protein as these promote fullness and are the best to keep blood sugar levels stable. A garage pie is not the only snack solution.

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