Sunday, 21 August 2011

A little Healthy Snacklet or Two...or Perhaps Three...

Today I'm doing a quick post about some healthy snacklets. I've never been one of these people who follow a strict ' three meals and nothing in between' regime. Oh no sir, I'm all for snacklets throughout the day. I don't claim to be an expert on any of this, all I can tell you is what has and does work for me.

The cat had the right idea...
When 3 or more hours go by between meals, my body's energy supply - my blood sugar - starts to dip low enough for tiredness to set in. This is when I know that it is time for one of my snacklets. These well-timed nibbles give my body give my body a steady supply of fuel, so I can perform my best both physically and mentally throughout the rest of the day. 

Fully sustained & ready for a run after some super star snacks!
"Studies have shown that a snack between 2:00 and 4:00 in the afternoon can improve cognitive skills such as memory, arithmetic reasoning, reading speed, and attention span."

Thought I'd share with you several favourites for when that time arrives:
  • Nakd Bars (Oaties)
    Oh how I love these little beauties. To be honest, I'm not that into cereal bars. But these aren't your conventional crunchy, sugary 'pretending-to-be-healthy-when-actually-you-may-as-well-be-eating-a-chocolate-bar' type. Nope, these are just raw fruits, oats, nuts and spices all smooshed together and pressed into shape (no baking involved). There are are no syrups, no added sugars and when you look on the back of the packaging, you can actually understand what has gone into them - no chemical names or sneaky nasties. Given that you could easily believe that they are vegetarian, dairy & wheat free and they count as one of your five a day.

    Onto the flavours, textures and taste!  (Just to note - I'm just reviewing the Nakd Oaties here - NOT the Nudies - That will come soon!)
    • Coco Loco
    • Apple Pie
    • Berry Cheeky
    • Banana Bread
    All of these bars have a wonderful, smooth, velvety texture. They hold together very well and don't break to pieces in your hands.
    The Coco Loco one (which happens to be my favourite) tastes like chocolate brownie - perfection! I like to keep it in the fridge so it's all hard and chewy - nom nom nom! In reality they are pretty soft. 
    Ingredients: Dates (38%), Oats, Mixed Nuts (15%) Raisins (13%) Apple Juice, Cocoa (5%) Natural Flavourings. Hang on, where’s the rest? There isn't any! Woo Hoo! 
    • Why are they so good?
    Obviously,  I wouldn't be including any snacklets on here without telling you all the sciency bits - why they are good for your body, then in turn your skin, nails and hair...Here's what the word on the street is:
    1. Rich in phytonutrients from raw plant foods to promote  a healthy immune system and body function;

    2. Natural source of essential vitamins and minerals like B-vitamins, vitamin C, potassium, calcium, magnesium and iron to help provide energy, support a strong immune system, strengthen bones, and combat stress and ageing;

    3. High fibre to help balance blood sugar levels, control  appetite and aid digestion; and

    4. Plant-source protein to help maintain muscle, support metabolism, balance blood sugar, and control appetite.

    So Voila guys, give them a go if you haven't already. Pssssst....if you like chocolate the Coco Loco rocks. (100 cals approx) 

    The small 30g bars which are more than satisfying cost around 60-80p depending on where you find them. Holland & Barrett are a good bet. Supermarkets sell multipacks. Or online HERE to buy individual bars.

    Alternatively, if you fall deeply, madly in love with them, click  HERE - which takes you direct to the makers who offer bulk boxes at very reasonable prices.

    • Extra Frothy Hot/Steamed Milk with sometimes a little extra goodness added...
    Ooooh a nice hot frothy milk. I do adore you so. I have hot milk almost everyday. I've been very poorly in my life - with a whole host of things - and I have always been advised that milk is a good way to build up immunity. One dietitian once told me that it's considered nature's most perfect food because it contains almost all the substances essential for human nutrition.

    Slurping the white stuff can:
    • Help prevent osteoporosis (high calcium content)
    • Can fight acne (due to Vitamin A content)
    • Help fight the effects of ageing 
    • Promote healthy skin (due to the high amounts of several B-complex vitamins.)
    • Provide an excellent source of protein
    • Help reduce bad cholesterol in the blood thus reducing your risk of a heart attack/stroke.
    I'm naughty in the sense that I tend to pop in to my local coffee shop i.e. Starbucks, Costa, Nero, Pret to get it instead of making at home. I guess it's easier when I'm on the move. I find a cup of warm milk a fantastic snack - extremely comforting too.
    Mouth watering...
    The Occasional added Extra?... 

    Active 18+ Manuka Honey £26.99
    Some of you will know what this is, some of you will have seen it on the supermarket shelves and thought 'why on earth is that sooo expensive?' and others, well others, may use it everyday. A mini run down for you - Manuka honey is basically honey only produced in New Zealand. The beekeepers basically place their hives near the uncultivated, wild Manuka bush. The bees think 'Nom nomManuka bush. 

    What makes Manuka honey unique is that it contains very high amounts of a naturally occurring compound called methygyloxal and is super antibacterial, so much so, people (including doctors, hospitals, vets etc.) use it for medicinal reasons, as well as for it's unique taste. 
    The Manuka Bush
    The upshot of it is Manuka honey has been found to help loads of things, both internal and external. If you're interested in finding out more about this superfood (what UMF means etc.) then why not check out this website.

    Just some of the internal benefits of eating Manuka honey:
    • Helps strengthen the immune system.
    • IBS
    • Sore throats
    • Can stop a cold in its tracks
    • Aches & Pains
    • Heart burn
    • Gum Disease
    • Stomach ache
    If you don't like the milk idea, you can also eat it straight from a teaspoon, spread on toast or in yogurt. Yum! 
    However, I love putting a teaspoon in with my warm milk (not too hot or else it will kill off all the good enzymes.) It tastes delicious...and there has also been some research to say that when milk and honey are combined they have anti-ageing - so you'll be super youthful and agile well into old age. Plus, they posses antimicrobial and cleansing properties (probably why so many products use them as ingredients).
    N.B. If you can't afford/don't take to Manuka honey just use normal honey. It's better than nothing my friends!

    • Dr. Karg Organic Sesame & Linseeds Mini Crispbreads
    I've often seen these mini crispbreads in big packs in my local Waitrose but one day, (when stopping off for a Nakd bar) in this little Wholefood type market next to London's Fulham Broadway Tube station I came across this little snack bag. I couldn't really resist and bought a couple to test out. That was a little while ago now and since then I have munched my way through rather a lot of them. They are rich in fibre, organic and super crunchy. 69p from Planet Organic.
    I like to sling them in my bag with a snack pot of hummus for an extra boost of protein.
    Snack pot hummus is so good. YUH.
    So that's it for this post folks, hope you've enjoyed it -I appreciate it has been a bit long! Sorry ;) Please do feel free to do one (or all three of the following things)
    • Comment below - I just love reading what you've got to say...
    • Enter my MEGA UBER giveaway which is the post below this one...
    • Nominate me in the Cosmo Beauty Awards - Link somewhere on the right...
    Thanks & Ciao for now x

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