Peanut butter, apple, banana, flax and chia seed crackers toast on a light background, top view

Who wouldn’t sometimes need a nice resting time with nice people, a refreshing shoot in the moment of fatigue, or just having a nice snack with some snacks and delicious snacks? Often, however, this means calming ampoules, which are difficult to count over a long day and are in no way compatible with healthy eating principles.

In fact, there are many ways to combine a wholesome day with a healthy diet, you just have to make more informed choices. It is always easier to give preference to home-made snacks, but you can do it when you are out.

It should be noted, however, that at the expense of, for example, an evening meal, no daily meal should be abandoned. Even if you know a small party is coming, the three bigger meals and two snacks should remain on the menu. Regularity is also very important for a healthy diet.

According to Siiri Krümann, a nutritionist and member of the Estonian Association of Nutritionists, a good snack is for example a fruit and a small handful of nuts, a slice of bread with vegetables, some vegetables with seeds or a glass of unflavoured yogurt.

“If you know in advance that there will be some gatherings in the evening, you shouldn’t miss a meal or snack, but choose something lighter. For example, in this case, a slimmer vegetable soup with a slice of whole grain bread and a snack of apple or vegetables would be good, ”Krümann advised. “If you skip a meal, a long meal will tend to make you more hungry and tend to eat more.”

Snacks and healthy snacks
Since we tend to snack frequently during the day, for example, at the office desk, behind the wheel, or while having a nice evening, more attention should be paid to ensuring that the three basic snacks are regular and healthy. In this case, the appetite to grab something unhealthy also decreases.

Often, both school and office cafes tend to offer a variety of greasy and sweet snacks or pastries for snacks that are very convenient to grab quickly. It is just as easy to actually put one fruit (banana, apple, pear, etc.) in the bag last night and make a small bag of nuts.

If there is any way to plan your meals in advance, you may want to prepare some delicious snacks. This way, lunch and dinner breaks will not be too long and we will avoid hunger attacks in the evening.

Various root and fruit fruits and berries are definitely a good snack. Unflavoured yoghurt or curd, as well as cottage cheese, may be added or consumed separately. Of the dairy products, it is always preferable to use acidified and non-flavored variants, since natural products are always healthier.

Yoghurts could be selected from bio-yoghurts made with azidophilic and bifidobacteria. Bio-yoghurts help to strengthen the microflora of the digestive tract. From harder products, for example, curd contains not only valuable proteins but is also rich in minerals.

Raw fruits and vegetables have a cleansing effect on the body due to their high content of liquid and various nutrients and fiber. They help maintain digestion, prevent blood sugar from fluctuating, eliminate toxins and excess cholesterol from the body, and also contribute to weight loss.

Various seeds, nuts or whole grain bread with some vegetable coating are definitely a good choice . It is worth remembering that the snack should not be larger than the palm of your hand.

If you want to replace your meal

While snacks and snacks are intended in addition to regular meals, you can sometimes substitute one by another when making wise choices. Knowing that you are planning to host friends in the evening, for example, can help you plan your menu in the most nutritious and healthy way possible.

So you can put whole wheat bread slices with some vegetable grease like hummus or guacamole on the table . Set aside tomato and cucumber slices or fresh salad with cold-pressed olive oil.

Vegetable breadcrumbs made with, for example, avocado, olives or chickpeas contain a lot of good unsaturated fats. Thanks to its high fiber content, chickpeas hummus helps lower cholesterol and balance blood sugar.

“When it comes to snacking, it would be a good idea to think about whether there is the right amount of macronutrients – proteins, good fats and carbohydrates – in the optimal ratio. It is a good idea to take some fresh vegetables aside and not overdo it, ”said the nutritionist.

A good snack is also made, for example, from fish, which many consider to be a staple meal. “Fish could be consumed 2-3 times a week, and here I would make no difference, either as a snack or as a main course,” Siiri Krümann advised.

Fat fish such as mackerel, herring and salmon provide our body with the essential fatty acids (EPA and DHA). Fatty fish provide omega-3 fatty acids that help the body produce compounds that reduce inflammation. So, for example, a nice fish slice on bread is a good snack.

How not to overdo it?
Since snacks are usually eaten in addition to the regular daily menu, you should limit the quantities so as not to overdo it. In addition, snacks are generally small and therefore often do not realize how much is actually raised for a long evening.

“The amount of snacks depends on what it is,” Siiri Krümann taught. “For example, a slice of vegetable with hummus can eat quite a large amount with a calm heart. However, the cheese selection should be limited to a few or three smaller pieces. ”

Don’t be fooled by the size of the snacks, as they can be quite energy-rich despite their small size. “A small match sandwich with plenty of drizzle will give you as much energy as an apple, but it will fill your stomach significantly less,” Krümann added.

Often good company and snacks are accompanied by alcohol. Therefore, it is definitely worth considering the amount of energy that comes from a drink. Alcohol gives us many calories without nutritional value and often has an appetite-boosting effect. We don’t always understand when the hand reaches for another shot at the glass.

One bottle of beer is equivalent in energy to one lighter little roast. If we drink a couple of glasses of wine or a bottle of beer in the evening, we may, due to the increased appetite, be able to devour undisturbed snacks throughout the day.

Excessive amounts of food, in addition to excess energy, are also a burden on the liver. The liver is the largest internal organ of our body and performs over five hundred different chemical functions in the body. “The liver is involved in the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. An overloaded liver cannot detoxify harmful substances in our bodies, ”said nutritionist Krümann. If the liver is overloaded and unable to cope well with the cleansing of the body, it can lead to various health problems such as allergies, skin rashes, etc.

What can you afford?

A healthy snack should provide the body with the necessary proteins, carbohydrates and fats, and also contain vitamins and minerals.

For those who want to choose something suitable and easy from the menu when dining out, the choice is always the different vegetable sticks, pickles, olives or salted beans. “Pulses are a good source of protein and contain insoluble fiber that is important for lowering cholesterol and stabilizing blood glucose levels,” Krümann advised.

It is also worth noting that even the simplest canned beans retain their fiber and flavonoid content when processed. Flavonoids are plant pigments that help strengthen our immune system, protect cells, and excrete harmful substances. The healthiest choice of jars available is leguminous canned legumes.

“Snacks offered in restaurants and in the store usually contain too much salt, saturated fats, sugars and other additives that our body doesn’t need,” explained Siiri Krümann.

According to the nutrition counselor, garlic breads may not be a bad snack at all, but if made with whole grain bread and good oil . Unfortunately, most eateries use refined cooking oil and also over-cook food. “After all, garlic is very good, has a lot of health benefits and contains a variety of minerals and phytonutrients,” Krümann advised that healthy garlic breads could be made at home.

“Chicken wings are usually made in deep fryer, so they are also processed in high temperature refined oil. However, chicken wings cooked in the oven would leave me with the main meal rather than a snack, ”he advised.

Snacks for consumption without conscience
Sometimes your hands just want to grab something to eat right after a strenuous job or a long evening, and there is a solution. “Berries and vegetables with a low glycemic load could be considered as such, because they can be consumed in large quantities without very high blood sugar,” said Siiri Krümann. “There is a good chance that the stomach will be full before overtraining,” he added.

Examples of such vegetables are cucumber, tomato, pepper, cabbage, zucchini, cauliflower, cauliflower, lettuce and berries, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, currants and chicory. “During the summer season, fresh, fermented salted cucumber is a great snack without the guilt. In addition to vitamins and minerals, it contains the good bacteria that our body needs, ”Krümann advised. He added that berries can be used to make nicely iced snacks that can be wiped out on the couch to remind of a warm summer night.

Vegetables are an ideal snack for an evening snack, also because they help to produce a good sleep hormone.

Beautiful and healthy snacks

Going out with the kids or celebrating birthdays is probably not limited to olives and beans, but here too, look for alternatives that are as appealing to the little ones as potato chips and lemonade. Homemade pure fillet chicken fillets or whole grain flour pastries are possible choices.

It is worth remembering that children eat a lot with their eyes. So a beautiful colored root and fruit platter is definitely in place. Small cherry tomatoes, cucumber and carrot sticks, sweet peppers and the like in a delicious dip sauce will definitely delight the smaller ones in the family. A delicious and healthy dip sauce is made from unflavoured yogurt mixed with garlic, chives and the like. Similarly, instead of lemonade, you can make beautiful and delicious flavored water by adding colorful (frozen) berries, cucumber slices, etc. to the jug.

Very tasty homemade lemonade is made, for example, from rhubarb. Peel and chop the rhubarb and place in the bowl for a while with the brown sugar and cinnamon. Later you just need to add water and the exciting drink is ready. Similarly, it is worth using home-made apple and currant juices and your own garden produce.

For those who prefer a sweeter snack, self-made whole wheat flakes cookies or muesli are definitely better and have less sugar than those found on store shelves.

Healthy snacks and snacks don’t hurt
In addition to the three main meals and the two snacks, you can occasionally afford extra noodles when you’re not worrying about your weight. According to the nutrition counselor, Rule 80/20 might apply here. This means that if the diet is regular and healthy, you can sometimes afford to sin.

At the same time, there are those who can lose weight in a week when losing weight, but it will come back quickly on weekends. This means that it is much more difficult to reach a craving weight on days full of snacks. Depending on the amount of food eaten in the evening and the nutrient content, you could try to skip the last snack and bedtime for about two to three hours. In addition to the centimeters that have accumulated in the hips, a belly that is too full may cause sleep problems.

According to national dietary recommendations, up to four servings of sweet or salty vodka may be consumed daily, but of course this is not required. For example, one serving means one cookie, a couple of candy, 100ml soft drink or the like. According to the recommendation of the Estonian Nutritionists’ Association, such snacks would appear in the menu rather rarely and not on a daily basis. “It is worth considering that too frequent snacking also affects dental health,” Krümann emphasized.

The meals of the day include two snacks and they should be as healthy as possible and self-made if possible. This way we know exactly what to put in the mouth and keep the body in good shape.


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