Make your own hummus as a healthy snack, side dish, or appetizer!
Prep Time: 15 minutes Servings: 4
1 can (14 oz) garbanzo beans (drain them in colander and rinse under running water)
½ cup tahini
1 garlic clove (finely chopped)
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
6 tablespoons lemon juice
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tomatoes (diced)
1 large or 2 medium cucumbers (diced)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
*Serve with pita bread, flat bread, or vegetable sticks (carrots, broccoli, celery, pepper, etc)
Using a food processor, combine: garbanzo beans, tahini, garlic, vinegar, 4 tablespoons lemon juice, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Mix until ingredients form a smooth mixture (I actually like to leave my hummus a little thick and chunky so you can mix it less if you like this too!)
In large bowl gently toss tomatoes, cucumber, parsley, 1 tablespoon olive oil and remaining lemon juice (you can add more pepper, herbs, or other spices to this if you wish)
Serve hummus on small plates with tomato and cucumber salad on top
Help keep your energy levels up by eating breakfast and then eating small, frequent meals every 3 hours. Aim to have some protein and carbohydrates at each snack and meal and drink plenty of water throughout the day.
Try one of these ideas for a high protein, energy packed small meal:
1/2 cup low fat cottage cheese on a slice of whole wheat toast or mixed into 1/2 cup high fiber cereal
1/4 cup tuna salad made with light mayo on whole wheat bread/whole wheat pita and a piece of fruit, or add tuna to a green leafy salad with your favorite veggies and balsamic vinaigrette
1/2 cup egg salad made with light mayo with whole grain crackers and carrot and celery sticks
4 oz sliced turkey and low fat cheese rolled up in a whole wheat tortilla with mustard, lettuce, onion, and tomato and a piece of fruit on the side
PB&J on whole wheat bread: Nuts are a great way to get added protein- add a piece of fruit or greek yogurt to complete this delicious meal
Choose a whole wheat bagel or multi-grain English muffin with 2 tablespoons peanut butter or light cream cheese and smoked salmon
Oatmeal made with low fat milk and a tablespoon of peanut butter mixed in (or try sliced almonds) with fresh berries or sliced banana
Having a mid-morning and mid-afternoon snack helps you stay focused and energized, not to mention it helps prevent overeating when you get home from work.Try these delicious snacks to keep energy up all day:
Greek yogurt with 1/3c trail mix (dried fruit and nuts)
1/2c almonds with a string cheese and fruit
Peanut butter spread on an apple and a yogurt
Hummus with vegetable sticks/whole grain crackers and a string cheese
High fiber cereal (such as raisin bran, shredded wheat or grape nuts) with low fat milk and fruit
Low fat cottage cheese with sliced fruit
Try a fruit smoothie made with 1 cup fruit (try strawberries, banana, blueberries, or mango) 1 Tablespoon peanut butter, 3 Tablespoons Greek yogurt, skim or low fat milk, and 1 cup ice, blend and enjoy!
I hope these suggestions have been helpful, please let me know if I can help you further or if you have other questions. Good luck!
Many people confuse snacks with treats but they are very different!
Snacks should be eaten regularly to help you get in your daily nutrition
Treats are part of a healthy, well balanced diet but should be consumed less frequently than snacks- eaten in moderation
Ideally you should start each day with breakfast, then have a snack, eat lunch, have a snack, eat dinner, and have a snack.
Benefits of snacking
There are many nutrition and health related benefits associated with snacking. Snacking benefits adults as well as children. Some great benefits of snacking include:
Eat more to weight less:Eating small, frequent meals will help you eat less throughout the day which helps promote a healthy weight
Eat every 2-3 hours: Eating every few hours helps keep blood sugar stable which helps you avoid extreme hunger and helps you stay in control so you can make healthy choices and avoid sugar cravings from getting too hungry
Increase energy: If you are eating every 2-3 hours you are also keeping your blood sugar levels stable. Stable blood sugar means your energy level will stay steady. If you don’t eat your energy level falls and you get tired, snacking helps keep you energized
Increase nutrition: Snacking is a great opportunity to get more essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrition into your diet! Since you are eating more often you can include a greater variety of healthy foods into your diet
Improved concentration: Snacking between meals improves concentration, focus, and performance at work and at school.
What is a healthy snack?
A healthy snack should ideally consist of a carbohydrate, protein, and healthy fat. Don’t be afraid of eating fat! Fat is what helps us feel full and satisfied after eating so we are less likely to overeat. You do want to choose healthy fats such as those found in olive oil, fish, nuts, and low fat dairy products. Choose a snack that is about 100 to 200 calories (depending on your specific needs) and aim to eat it between bigger meals.
What are some examples of healthy snacks?
Low fat cottage cheese (protein and fat source) with cubed melon (carbohydrate source)
Peanut butter (protein and fat source) on whole wheat crackers (carbohydrate source) or a sliced apple (carbohydrate source)
Low fat Greek yogurt (protein and fat source) with high fiber cereal (carbohydrate source) sprinkled in
Mixed berries (carbohydrate source) with sliced almonds (protein and fat source)
The bottom line:
Snacking improves overall nutrition status, energy levels and concentration, and helps you eat less!
The ideal snack should be about 150 calories (depending on your individual needs) and composed of a carbohydrate, protein, and healthy fat!