So the snack thing. We all love to snack but there can often be huge differences between the foods we snack on. Most packaged, processed snacks are total rubbish - let's be honest - but when given a bit of thought, you can be munching on some of the best foods for your body come snack-time. Here is a list of some of the foods that will help calm stress levels, raise happy hormones, keep hunger at bay (along with little miss moody that often shows up at the same time), and boost brain power for those afternoon sessions you may need it.
+ Trail mix; this is an easy one and can be tailor made to suit you. Buy the one you love or make your own. My fav's have to be macadamia's, goji berries and activated walnuts... Or pepita seeds, raisins, sunflower seeds and almonds. A combo of seeds, nuts and dried fruits will give you protein, fats, sugars, minerals and vitamins, whilst keeping you happy and not hungry. Almonds are high in stress-busting magnesium; sunflower seeds boost your moods; and apricots are high in iron getting oxygen and blood flow to your brain.
+ Fresh fruit; always a winner. A banana, apple, a few plums, a kiwi or two... The list goes on. Grab organic and munch away when hunger strikes on your commute to or from work, in that mid afternoon lull, or for morning tea.
+ Dried fruit; it's light and takes up little room in your handbag you can keep it there nibbling on little bits and pieces over a few days even. Be sure to buy organic, sulphur free, and added sugar free. I love dates, prunes, apricots and dried apples. You can also get dried pears, peaches, pineapple, go his, raisins, jackfruit, papaya and mango. Don't get too carried away tho - you're better off with fresh fruit so keep these as emergencies or once to twice a week.
+ Veggie sticks and dip or nut butter; yum yum yum! Carrots, cucumber, celery, capsicum. Buy or make your own nut butter (but try having no more than a tablespoon at once) or take a dip instead. A super easy hommous recipe is 2 tins of organic chickpeas in the blender and add the following: 1 tin's worth of filtered water, 2 cloves of garlic, 2 tablespoons of tahini, 2 good pinches of salt, a nice splash of olive oil, and some cumin or chilli if you wish (delish). Blend until smooth. Makes enough for about a week. Another delish roast capsicum dip can be found here.
+ Boiled eggs; boil the night before or cook a few up on a Sunday and keep for quick snacks or additions to lunches and dinners. We get protein, vitamins A and D, as well as choline which helps with brain function - great for working girls.
+ Coconut water; when you forget your handbag snacks, you can always buy coconut water. There's many great ones these days but I try sticking too straight up coconut water in glass jars - no added
any things and not in plastic if possible. Super hydrating and with natural electrolytes so unless you're working out daily, one of these is delicious each day but anymore than that is unnecessary.
+ Superfood powder - to add to and mix in your coconut water, plain water, milk or juice; keep your fav combo or pre-bought one in a small container or zip lock bag, ready to add to your liquid of choice for a daily dose of amazing ness nutrient powers to keep you healthy and full of vitality. Vital Greens is a great mix you can get from a health food store. Or combine cacao, maca, acai and cinnamon and add to some almond milk. Mmm. I love a mix of chlorella, blue green algae, spirulina, wheat grass and barley grass in coconut water most afternoons. It's an acquired taste... But my body loves it!
+ Raw bliss balls, brownies and sweet treats; best ever! I love raw treats and desserts. Try making my lemon delicious balls, raw chocolate brownies, banana snowballs, power balls, green superfood bars, carob cake or walnut spiced tea cake. All full of nutrition for you body, mind and soul.
+ Tuna or salmon in tins; Fish 4 Ever is my brand of choice due to their ethics and sustainable fishing practices but I know there are now a few other great brands available. Packed with protein to keep you satiated as well as essential fatty acids for your hair, skin, brain and more... enjoy with some veggie sticks, an apple, some nuts or solo.
+ Hard cheeses; protein, fats and fat soluble vitamins. Pair with a piece of fruit and you've got a winner.
+ Crackers; make or buy raw crackers if you've never tried them as they are so so good! Full of seeds, nuts, veggies, seaweeds or some salt and often other added goodies such as spirulina, flaxseeds, or coconut. Crunchy and filling I love raw crackers. Here's one easy recipe. And another easy recipe, although not really raw, is this: Keep the carrot pulp from making juice, add ground flax, and either carrot juice or water and mix until moist (but not wet). Add salt, cumin, chilli, dulse, herbs etc to taste, then spread on a lined baking tray, and using a knife, score into squares, and cook at about 180 degrees Celsius until dry to touch (can be a few hours) and then turn them over until totally dry. Alternatively use a dehydrator to make them raw. Keep in an airtight container and enjoy with dip, avo, nut butter, sliced tomato... I also add them to the side of my salads or left over veggies at lunch.
So there you go. All my favourite snacks with a few extra goodies and nutritional info to boot (when can I not add those bits in hey?). What do you keep in your handbag as go-to items when you need a bit of a nibble? I'd love to see your sharing below or on the Facebook page.