Quite often the words “weight-loss” and “snacks” appear in the same sentence.
But that also usually brings thoughts of “tasteless,” “cardboard,” “boring,” and “totally unsatisfying.”
Am I Right?
How about I help you out and give you my best weight-loss friendly snacks that aren’t just nutritious but also delicious!
What is the criteria for my best I hear you ask…
Well, they need to be nutrient-dense whole foods where a little goes a long way; foods that contain protein and/or fibre.
1 – Nuts
It is correct that nuts contain both calories and fat, but they are NOT fattening!
I mean, of course I’m not talking about the ‘honey roasted’ and coated ones of course. Those ones are almost certainly fattening.
Studies show that people who eat nuts tend to be healthier and leaner than people who don’t.
It’s important to note that nuts also contain protein and fibre, this means that a small amount of them goes far in terms of filling you up. And that’s not to mention the vitamins and minerals you can also get from nuts.
Did you know that almonds have been shown to help with weight loss? At least 10% of the fat in these nuts is NOT absorbed by the body. Plus, almonds can also help to boost your metabolism!
Tip: Portion out a handful of unsalted/unsweetened nuts into a small container or zip lock bag and pop it in your bag for a snack on the go.
2 – Fresh Fruit
As with nuts, studies show that people who tend to eat more fruit are usually more healthy that those who don’t. (I’m sure you’re not too surprised to hear this!)
Sure, fresh fruit contains sugar, but whole fruits (I’m not talking about juices or sweetened dried fruit) also contain quite a bit of water and fibre; not to mention their nutritional value with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. And fresh fruit is low in calories.
Fibre not only helps fill you up and keep you full (known as the ‘satiety factor’) but it also helps to slow the release of the sugar from fruit into your bloodstream and reduce the notorious blood sugar spike.
Try a variety of fruit (apples, pears, melons, berries, etc.) and pair that with a handful of nuts.
Tip: Can’t do fresh? Try frozen. Bonus, they’re already chopped for you ☺
3 – Chia seeds
This is one of my absolute favourites…
Chia is not only high in fibre (and I mean HIGH in fibre), but it also contains protein and omega-3 fatty acids (yes THOSE omega-3s we have spoken about before!). As well as antioxidants, calcium, and magnesium.
Can you see how awesome these little guys are?
They may be small but they are very absorbent, so if you soak them for a few minutes, they make a thick pudding (that is delicious and fills you up).
Tip: Put two tablespoons of seeds in a bowl with ½ cup of your choice of nut milk and wait a few minutes. Add in some berries, chopped fruit or nuts, and/or cinnamon and enjoy!
4 – Boiled or poached eggs
Eggs are jam packed with nutrition and most of it is found in the yolk.
They contain lots of high-quality protein as well as a good amount of minerals and vitamins.
And there is recent research that shows the cholesterol in the yolks is NOT associated with high elevated cholesterol or heart disease risk.
Yup, you read that right!
Tip: Boil 6-12 eggs at a time and keep them in you fridge for a lightning quick (and nutritious) snack!
5 – Vegetables
I’m sure I don’t need to tell you again about how great these are for you, but perhaps I need to sell you on the delicious “snack-ability” of these nutrition bombs.
Veggies contain fibre and water to help fill you up and keep you full, you don’t need me to tell you about their vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, right?!?
You can easily open a bag of baby carrots and/or cherry tomatoes and give them a quick rinse (they’re already bite-sized and ready to go).
Tip: Bring on the dip! Have you ever tried putting almond butter on celery? How about trying my new hummus recipe below?
Go ahead and try one, or more, of these healthy snacks. They best bit is they are customisable to your own preferences.
Prepare them the night before if you need to. They will not be “tasteless,” like “cardboard,” “boring,” or “completely unsatisfying.” Trust me.
Makes about 2 cups
1 can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained & rinsed
⅓ cup tahini
1 garlic clove
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 dash salt
1 dash pepper
Put all ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. You may need to thin it out, so add a bit of water 1 or 2 tablespoons at a time and blend.
Serve & enjoy!
Tip: Don’t like sesame? Use an avocado in place of the tahini, and olive oil in place of the sesame oil.