So, it's eleven o'clock in the morning or mid-afternoon and the Cookie Monster has appeared at the door, ready to wreak havoc with your diet, but fear not as there are some simple snack swaps for weight loss, which will help banish those troublesome hunger pangs and help you keep those new year resolutions to lose those extra pounds or just to be more healthy. The year has started so well for us all but there are certain times of the day when our sugar levels take a nose dive and we need that special something to pick us up. Here are my favorite snack swaps for weight loss that help satiate my hunger and that will do no damage to the waistline.
This is the most obvious healthy snack so when you're craving that sweet treat and looking for one of the most simple snack swaps for weight loss, reach not for the candy bar but for the fruit bowl. If you don't have one yet, why not buy a fruit bowl for the office and take it in turns to fill it. Being surrounded by healthy foods will remind you to eat healthier. Dried fruits are another great option, whether it's figs, dates or prunes. Don't go crazy with the dried variety as their sugar is more concentrated than their hydrated counterparts, but three or four pieces of dried fruit as a snack wont do you any harm.
2 Veggie Sticks and Houmous
Instead of potato chips and dips, veggie sticks and a low fat dip are the far healthier option. Just chop up some celery sticks, carrots and bell peppers and pop them in your snack pot for when hunger strikes. Cherry tomatoes are another great snack option. Make your own butter bean houmous by mixing some butter beans, garlic, seasoning and a little olive oil in a blender and there you have a delicious alternative houmous for your afternoon snack.
3 Low Fat Greek Yoghurt and Stewed Prunes
This is great if you want a sweet dessert-like treat that's full of goodness. The protein packed yoghurt will sustain you whilst the prunes will give you the sweetness you crave, without doing half as much damage as a candy bar. And prunes are great for keeping you regular, something we all need from time to time! You can make your own dried fruit compote by soaking your favourite dried fruit in a little water and heating over a hob. The fruit should soften and once it does, leave it to cool.
4 Cheese and Biscuits
I love cheese and obviously I'm not advocating eating a block everyday but like most things, moderation is key. Three water biscuits topped with some wafer thin cheese slices (which you can make with a potato peeler) and a slice of pickle or a little dollop of your favourite chutney on top, will pack the protein punch you need to fill you up and will satisfy that snack craving, without giving you the sugar rush and dreaded sugar low.
5 Apple Slices with Nut Butter
Nut butter is fabulous for when the hunger pangs strike. Chop up an apple and dip the fresh slices into some almond or cashew nut butter. Add a sprinkling of cinnamon for that extra zing and to help stabilise your blood sugar levels.
6 Banana Shake
Who doesn't love a milk shake?! Whilst the ones available at fast food chains are anything but healthy, you can make your own delicious and healthy banana shake that will pick you up during that morning or afternoon sugar low, for under 100 calories. Use a very ripe banana for maximum sweetness and add 100 ml of unsweetened almond milk. Whiz in a blender and sprinkle it with that all important blood sugar stabilizing wonder spice, cinnamon.
This is another great alternative to potato chips. Popcorn is a brilliant snack and it's not just reserved for the darkened environs of the movie theatre. The fibre will keep you fuller for longer, which makes it your damage limitation snack. Now bags of snack popcorn are available in the snack aisles, but it's super simple and cheap to make yourself so why would you spend your hard earned cash! You can even add your own healthy toppings like a sprinkle of cinnamon and stevia or a dash of sea salt and paprika or chili.
These are my favourite snack swaps, which are yours? Do you have any other healthy snack ideas?
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