Lately because of my crazy schedule, I've been eating a lot more snacks and a lot less meals. This is ok for me because I LOVE snacks so much. It's been a while since I've had an actual cooked meal that I've cooked because I've been working over dinner or I've been spending my evenings studying and my focus isn't on preparing food.
I was actually thinking about my favourite snacks today after I finished my workout and wanted something good to fuel my body. So these are 3 of my favourite healthy snacks that I've been eating a lot of lately because of pure convenience and nutritional benefit. Let me show you!
First up, my favourite... a berry protein smoothie. I've never been one for the "tropical fruit" smoothies... I always prefer a berry smoothie! My typical smoothie includes either fresh or frozen berries. I buy an assortment of frozen berries when I purchase frozen, or I just use up whatever fresh berries I have in my fridge before they go bad. If I'm using frozen, I don't include ice in my smoothie, however I do put some cubes in if I'm using fresh berries. My favourite berries to use are strawberries, blackberries (they give it an awesome purple colour) and cherries!! Cherries are for sure my favourite when they're frozen. I then add a scoop of Sun Warrior Plant Based Raw Vanilla Protein and fill the rest of the cup up with 1 part coconut water and 1 part regular water and then BLEND.
I love berries because of their high nutritional factor. They are FULL of antioxidants (any fruit or veggie of the dark purple/reds are full of these) which help fight off free radicals in the body (free radicals lead to cancer..). Antioxidants help protect your immune system as well as help your skin and nails. Some of the antioxidants in berries are Anthocyanins, Quercetin, and Vitamin C. Anthocyanins are what give berries their colour and helps reduce inflammation in the body! Quercetin can also help reduce inflammation in the body, specifically in the joints which is a bonus for people suffering from arthritis. Vitamin C is responsible for the health of collagen in our bodies, which helps maintain cartilage and aid in joint flexibility (among other things)!
This is my take on a classic yogurt parfait. I discussed a couple days ago how I'm off of dairy because my body does NOT like it so when I purchase yogurt, I purchase yogurt made with coconut milk instead of actual dairy. Basically, I scoop the vanilla coconut milk yogurt into a bowl, cut up any fresh fruit I have in the fridge (or use frozen if I have some on hand) and mix it all up! Sometimes I will put ground flax seed on top if I have some in my cupboard. Here you can see I used fresh fruit, strawberries, blackberries and green grapes!
I choose coconut milk yogurt over rice milk yogurt or almond milk yogurt because I know the benefits of coconut milk in your diet as a healthy fat! Almond milk is a VERY close second, so go ahead and do that if you want to. Coconut milk contains Lauric Acid, Antimicrobial Lipids and Capric Acid all which have antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties. Lauric Acid helps fight viruses such as the flu! Coconut milk also helps with cardiovascular health because it may help the body fight off organisms that produce plaque in the arteries and blood vessels.
Oooo and don't forget, the healthy fats in coconut milk help our skin and hair look AH-mazing because the natural fats are like an antiseptic to the body and help treat dandruff, skin infections and dry skin. It serves as a kind of "natural moisturizer" and MAY help repair wrinkles and damaged skin. BONUS.
And last but certainly not least...
So I think this is probably the easiest snack in my list here because it's literally plopping some veggies into a bowl and opening up the hummus and dipping and eating. My favourite hummus to purchase is Summer Fresh Foods Roasted Garlic Hummus or their Red Pepper Hummus. They are SO GOOD and I actually went to their factory where they make the hummus a while ago and they are so impecable at what they do that I've been an even bigger supporter ever since going there.
My favourite raw veggies to eat with hummus are cucumbers (mini), bell pepper (orange or yellow), radishes, carrots and celery. I don't need to explain to you why raw veggies are healthy for you. If you don't already know that you should be eating veggies, well... I don't know what then, but it's sad. Hummus is a great way to get a little added protein into your diet since it's made with chick peas and chick peas are a GREAT source of plant protein.
I would love to know what snacks you would add to my list! Leave a comment below with either your recommendation or a link to your fav snack and I will head over and check it out!!