Contrary to popular dieting beliefs, ‘snack’ doesn’t have to be a bad word – provided you’re eating the right stuff, which is good news given Neilson shows 96 per cent of Australians indulge at least one snack attack every day.
The problem, though is that the same research shows 94 per cent of us grab snacks from a supermarket, which can be a minefield of processed, enticingly-packaged treats. Often, the convenience-factor of ready-made snacks then reigns supreme.
Sydney-based nutritionist Teresa Boyce offers her five best successful snacking tips for health- or waistline-conscious folks:
1. Steer clear of all ‘diet’ products. These types of snacks aren’t anyone’s friends – they tend to be packed with sugar or artificial sweeteners. Have a look at the label – if it contains more than one teaspoon or 5g of sugar per serve, give it a miss.
2. Aim for 10g of protein per snack. This will help to balance blood sugar levels so you feel fuller and more satisfied between meals.
3. Be honest with yourself about portion sizes. Snacks should contain approximately 500-750kJ per serve. Anything more than this and you’re pushing towards a small meal.
4. Don’t be afraid of fat! Essential fatty acids are essential for good health. Try spreading one tablespoon of almond butter on sliced apple or celery sticks for a quick but really nutritious snack.
5. Watch your liquid kilojoules. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying your afternoon pick-me-up but remember a full-fat latte contains around 550kJ per serve. For a lower kilojoule option (if you’re really game!), try mixing a teaspoon of coconut oil with your long black instead of milk and sugar.
So what are some great between-meal snack options? Here are a couple of our favourites:
Obela Hommus To Go
This convenient and portable snack is high in protein and fibre, but free of gluten and dairy. They come in several delicious flavours and with their own crackers for dipping too. Convenience plus!
Bounce Spirulina Ginseng Defence Boost Balls
We’re partial to a protein ball here at Sporteluxe HQ, which is why the Bounce Spirulina Ginseng Defence Boost is team fave. It’s packed vitamins and antioxidants and is easy to stash in the smallest clutch or gym bag pocket.
Aussie Bodies Naked 100% Natural Protein Bars
They’re developed from the kind of wholefoods you’d find in your pantry – including sesame seeds, almond, ground LSA, coconut, cacao powder and chia seeds – as well as whey protein. Each bar contains 8.2g of protein and 10.7g of carbs. They come in two nut-variety flavours (Peanut and Cacao, and Almond, Coconut and Cacao) and contain 8.2g protein and 10.7g carbohydrates each.