Snack attack

HEALTH

Although you may feel guilty about snacking, eating between meals doesn’t need to be a weight loss disaster. In fact, grazing on small amounts of food throughout the day can help you to avoid extreme hunger and prevent you from overeating at your next meal.

The key is to keep moderation and balance in mind. Select foods that will satisfy your hunger, supply your body with lasting energy and provide you with key nutrients. If it doesn’t fit this description, then don’t eat it!

EXERCISE

After a workout try snacking on a handful of raw unsalted nuts, celery sticks with peanut butter, some cottage cheese with fruit or chopped vegetables with hummous.

The protein in these snacks is important for preserving existing muscle mass (which can help boost your metabolism) and will also help keep you full up for longer, without undoing all your efforts in the gym.

NUTRITION

The key to healthy snacking is preparation. With a little planning you can ensure you always have a selection of healthy snacks in your bag or desk drawer so that you’re ready to make the right choices when temptation strikes.

By keeping the right kinds of foods handy, heeding your hunger pangs can become an important part of your weight loss journey.

© Sarah West Nutrition

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Eat your greens

HEALTH:

Dark green leafy vegetables are highly nutritious, providing a wide variety of important essential vitamins and minerals (such as folic acid, potassium, magnesium, iron and calcium) plus a source of carotenoids and anti-oxidants (including vitamins A, C and E).

However, despite their nutritional advantages they are one of the most under-consumed foods in the average person’s diet.

EXERCISE:

Spinach has long been known as the food that gave Popeye his bulging muscles. And it seems he had the right idea; research has indicated that eating 200g of green leafy vegetables can make your muscles more efficient, reducing the amount of oxygen needed to power muscles during exercise by as much as 5% (resulting in both improved muscle gains and better overall health).

So why not follow Popeye’s example for an improved workout?

NUTRITION:

Try some of these suggestions to increase your intake of leafy greens:

  • Wrap it up: Try preparing a tortilla wrap with chicken or turkey and adding romaine leafy greens for some extra nutrients and flavour.
  • Wilt It: Wilted green leafy vegetables will hugely reduce in size, providing the same nutritious goodness in a far more manageable form. Try lightly steaming spinach over a pan of boiling water then mixing with crushed garlic and stirring into hot pasta.
  • Curried: Spinach is an old favourite in curry houses. Make your own Saag Aloo by mixing shredded spinach with chopped new potatoes and adding turmeric, cumin and grated ginger.

© Sarah West Nutrition