How to choose snacks that support your goals
13 Aug 2019
We all want filling and delicious snacks. But, to reach the goals you’ve set for the 6-week Challenge it’s important to ensure these snacks support the goal you’re working towards. To help you choose the best snacks, follow this simple guide.
Select fibre-rich foods
For the ultimate snack between meals, select fibre-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes and lentils. These foods help fuel the brain and balance your blood sugar levels, so you don’t get light-headed or overeat at your next meal. Some tasty ways to enjoy fibre-rich foods include roasting and salting chickpeas or kale leaves. Having a diced tomato salad or frozen berries as your mid-meal hunger buster.
Select high protein foods
Protein-rich snacks are a great way to ward off a growling stomach between meals. To ensure variety and an abundance of nutrients mix up your protein sources through consuming both animal and plant-based protein. For animal-based, try some shaved turkey breast wrapped in a lettuce leaf, or a small can of tuna mixed with some diced cucumber and corn. For plant-based, try cottage cheese and tomato on a corn thin, Greek yoghurt with a handful of roasted nuts, or a couple of hard-boiled eggs.
Often people think they’re hungry when their bodies are actually just craving water. Next time you reach to grab a snack, think about when you last had something to drink. If thirst is even a slight possibility, have a glass of water before you have that snack. Herbal tea, plain water, and even high-water content foods like celery, cucumber, or lettuce are all great ways of boosting your fluid intake. What’s more, you’ll feel fuller without adding excess kilojoules to your diet.
Avoid refined carb-rich foods
Highly processed and refined carbohydrates like white bread, white rice-based products (think rice cakes or rice thins), as well as many puffed grain-based bars, all provide minimal fibre, protein or healthy fats to help keep you full. These products will wreak havoc on your blood sugar levels, leaving you feeling fatigued, moody and unfocused.
Avoid sugar-filled foods and beverages
Many packaged snack foods today have a good deal of sugar added to them. As glucose is our preferred energy source, our bodies have been programmed to crave sugar. This is great for food manufacturers, but not so great for those trying to lose weight. Learn to read the labels and avoid products with added sugar in any of its guises. Products of particular concern include muesli bars, flavoured yoghurts, and the usual suspects: chocolate, lollies and biscuits.
For the best results possible this 6-week Challenge, take this guide and apply it to your everyday. Also look to the nutrition portal in the Coaching Zone app for further snack ideas, and ask your coach and other Coaching Zone members what their favourite healthy snacks are.