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Healthy and Mindful Snacking

By Barbara Cox, Head of Wellbeing

Eating healthy and mindfully isn’t about resistance or restriction. It’s about enjoying the food you’re eating.

We all eat unhealthily and mindlessly at times, whether we’re on the go at a service station, out having coffee with friends, in a hurry, watching TV or finishing all the food on our plate just because it’s there.

Or we might be eating to handle stress like snacking on some comfort food but not really tasting it after the first few bites. I’ve seen people “inhale” snacks when they’re feeling stressed within just a few chews, which isn’t healthy for your digestive system either!

Mindful eating is a powerful way to bring balance into every aspect of how we eat, not just snacking. It cultivates an “inner wisdom” and awareness of how our body and mind are reacting and connected. It also creates an “outer wisdom” of making wiser use of nutritional information to satisfy your needs and preferences.

So, here’s some healthy snacks to try that will fuel your day and increase your energy much better than grabbing the usual unhealthy options like chocolate bars or crisps.

Snack ideas:  

  1. Fresh Fruit – 1 piece is roughly 100 calories  
  • Crudités’ of vegetables (peppers, cucumber, carrots, celery) – portion control should be 1 whole piece of veg or ¼ cucumber, 2 sticks of celery. Start with a small amount and chew slowly
  • Rye cracker with different toppings like: 
  • Boiled egg (1 egg + 1 spelt cracker)  
  • Avocado, lemon juice and sunflower seeds sprinkled on top (1/2 avocado 
  • Hummus dip (1 tbsp)  
  • Olives (2 tbsp)  

4. Eggs are easy, quick, cheap, tasty and nutritious. Try making omelettes with the veg you like or serve with salad. Can be eaten cold as a snack or hot as a meal. Add boiled eggs to salad with fish for extra protein. This is a big snack and only use if you have done masses of exercise  

5. Nut and seed mixes can be great as a snack on their own or added to soups, casseroles. You can make a super mix by adding 1 tsp of each of the nuts and seeds and keep airtight in a container then grab a handful at a time (be mindful that nuts are calorific) 

Mix cashew nuts, Brazil nuts, almonds, pistachios, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds 

6. Cashew nut butter is a good staple to have on hand for spelt crackers and wheat free toasted bread

7. Pick up some flax seeded tortilla chips and dip into hummus, salsa or guacamole 

8. Dairy-free or plain yogurt with fresh fruit (10 black grapes with 2 tbsp dairy free yogurt) 

9. Fruit smoothie (banana, berries, non-dairy milk) enough to make 1 small glass

10. Edamame (whole Japanese soya beans – steamed) (these normally come frozen in the pods so about 10 pods) 

11. Plain popcorn (use coconut oil to pop popcorn) (1 small bowl, no butter, no salt, just plain!) – OK maybe you can add some Himalayan crystal salt, dried spices like paprika, turmeric or chilli powder to flavour it.

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