The Making of a Healthy Snack
- They should contain real food ingredients, preferably put together by yourself as opposed to something packaged and convenience. And we will touch on packaged and convenience options below.
- They should provide a steady source of controlled energy, meaning your body utilises the snack at a really good pace, as opposed to the snack affecting your blood sugar levels, and therefore lifting you up before coming down to crash with even more cravings than before.
- They should celebrate the most nutrient dense foods that lead you towards your health and wellness goals, supporting your specific energy needs, personal dietary requirements and lifestyle factors.
The Perfect Combination and Power of Three
There are three key ingredients that I believe constitute the perfect combination, and the power of these three ingredients can have a profound affect on your health.
- Abundance of nutrient dense, health boosting, good dietary fats: They provide incredible sustained release of energy, promote hormone balance, lubricate our entire functioning system and boost our mood and brain health.
- Moderate amount of well sourced ethically chosen protein from land and sea animals and or nuts and seeds. This protein becomes the building block for our bodies growth and repair when living an active lifestyle.
- Smart carbs in the form of above ground vegetables rich with vitamins, fibre and antioxidants for optimal health on a cellular level fighting free radicals and boosting our bodies immunity and overall wellbeing.
What to be wary of in so called ‘Healthy Snacks’
Be mindful of words like ‘Natural’ and ‘Organic’ as that doesn’t always mean healthy or good for you. Brands have become very clever in using certain key words and labelling colours to trick you into thinking you’re making a smart choice. Dig a little further and check the label.
Check how much sugar is in your snack. Often healthy snacks, bars and treats are made up with high amounts of dates, other dried fruit and natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup. Yes they are all naturally occurring ingredients but they are very high in fructose and react much the same way in your body as a standard chocolate bar. Sugar is sugar no matter what way you look at it and often we are consuming too much to reach our goals affectively.
Check the recommended serving size. Sometimes a bar you could devour in one sitting is designed to be divided into 6 servings, meaning you are getting higher amounts of calories and sugar than you may be expecting or needing. I am often shocked with how small a recommended serving size is, especially when how much sugar is in a single serve, let alone the entire item.