Monday, December 30, 2013

About Snacks

A LOT of people have asked, since we've changed our eating habits, about snacks.  I definitely remember, when we often attempted to eat a low fat, calorie restricted diet, how hungry we got between meals and how much we relied on snacks to get us through to the next meal.  Since switching to a higher fat, low carb diet, we have been amazed to find that snacks are just not a very important part of our eating plan.  We don't need them.  When you eat enough good quality protein and fat at a particular meal, it really does carry you over to the next one.  You just don't get very hungry in between.  Ted and I have both found that we often don't even want to eat between meals.  Just try getting hungry before lunch after eating this for breakfast!  However, there are times when one is delayed, for some reason or another, from eating at the normal time or when one has been particularly active, that hunger does set in before a regular meal can be eaten.  

The problem becomes convenience.  Healthy snacks are not very convenient. Gone are the days of grabbing some crackers, chips or pretzels.  There really aren't many store bought, packaged snacks that are good for you.  Below is a list of the things we usually eat as snacks. We try to have several of them in stock and prepared.  Some of them are somewhat portable.  You can always take along a baggie of nuts.   I'm on the look out for other recipes and snack ideas and will update this post as I find them.  The two main rules about snacks that we try to follow are these: 1. We always make sure that a snack includes a protein.  2. We don't eat starchy carbs for snacks. 

  • Raw vegetables with home made hummus or other bean dip 
  • Raw vegetables with home made yogurt/ sour cream ranch dip (recipe coming soon)
  • Raw vegetables alone or with an ounce of nuts
  • Plain, full fat greek yogurt blended with fruit (raw nuts optional, drizzle of honey optional)
  • 1/2 cup full fat cottage cheese and 1/2 cup cut up fruit
  • A piece of fruit and an ounce of raw nuts
  • An apple dipped in sugar free peanut or almond butter
  • A piece of fruit and an ounce of cheese
  • a hard boiled egg (or homemade deviled eggs with homemade mayo!)
    • Boil up a dozen eggs on Sunday afternoon and have them handy all week.
  • a hamburger patty
    • I keep pre-cooked, grilled ground beef patties individually wrapped in the freezer.
  • a grilled chicken breast
    • I keep pre-cooked, grilled chicken breasts, individually wrapped, in the freezer.
  • A small serving of last night's left overs
  • A small salad with some protein on it (cheese, nuts, sunflower seeds, bacon, chicken, tuna)
  • a pouch of wild caught tuna (add some homemade mayo or olive oil if desired)
  • a pouch of wild caught salmon (add some homemade mayo or olive oil if desired)
  • A bowl of soup (freeze individual portions of your homemade soups).
We do have "dessert" on occasion in the evening, after dinner.  It is usually fruit in some way with some sort of protein (usually nuts).  If it is a "real" dessert that I have made, like my Peanut Butter Banana Brownies,  we make sure there is protein in it (these brownies have eggs, flax seed and nut butter and sometimes walnuts!) or we'll eat nuts along side it.  We never eat a fruit or sweet without that all important protein to help regulate and mitigate the insulin response! 

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