Taking time to snack during the day is very important. It is a great way to help you lose weight or maintain weight loss. Snacking helps you not to overeat during your meals, as you are never hunger before a meal. Snacking also helps to combat cravings and hunger before or after meals. Eating a snack when you feel slightly hungry can reduce the number of bad food choices you can make during the day, especially on days when your meals a spread far apart. Snacking can reduce the amount of calories you consume in a day, often most people eat when they are hungry and consume more calories than they need.
So what should you snack on? You can snack on fresh fruit, granola, dark chocolate or popcorn. However snacking on foods that are high in protein, fibre and fat can help satisfy your hunger or cravings for a longer period of time. Foods such as eggs, nuts, beans, avocado and seeds are really great snack options.
How often should you snack during the day? This will differ from person to person. Some people will snack two to three times a day because their meals are spread far apart or they are very active throughout the day. Well some people will snack once a day because they are very stationary and they have larger meals throughout the day. How often you snack will mainly depend on how active you are during the day and how large your meals are.
How many calories should one snack contain? A general rule of thumb, in the health community is 200 calories. Most of those calories should be made up of healthy proteins and fats to keep you satisfied until your next meal.
To make snacking easier it is best to have portable snacks that you can keep in your bag, car or in the office. By having healthy snacks that are regularly available to you, you are less likely to consume any unhealthy processed snacks.
I personally enjoy mixing healthy protein, fat and carbohydrates into one healthy snack. One of the best sources of healthy protein and carbohydrates are beans. Beans are also high in fibre, which is great for losing weight and also keeping you full until your next meal.
One way of incorporating beans into a snack is by roasting the beans until they are golden brown and crispy. This is a really great way to change the texture and flavour of the beans. By pairing the beans with nuts, seeds, dried fruit, granola or dark chocolate will make the snack more filling and tasty.
Sugar beans also known as speckled or cranberry beans are one of the most affordable beans in South Africa and other parts of the world. This bean is slightly sweet hence the name, I really enjoy using this bean to make my snack mix as it satisfies both my savoury and sweet cravings. However, you can definitely use any other bean that is affordable in your country or that you enjoy eating to make this snack mix.
Roasted sugar bean snack mix
🥜Preparation time: 15 minutes
🥜Cooking time: 2 hours
1 cup/ 250ml dry sugar beans
4 cups/ 1000ml (1l) water
Salt and pepper to taste
1T/ 15ml vegetable oil
1/3 cup/ 80ml mixed raisins
1/3 cup/ 80ml mixed nuts
Place sugar bean on a tray to pick out any stones, grass or unpleasant looking beans. Rinse beans under cold water, before placing in a small pot with water and a pinch of salt. Cook the beans 50-60 minutes until the beans are soft but still keep their shape.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Drain the beans and place on a baking tray. Drizzle oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Roast the beans for 40-45 minutes, tossing the beans every 15 minutes, to ensure that the beans roast evenly.
Once the beans are crisp and golden brown leave to completely cool, before mixing raisins and nuts.
Store the trail mix in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.
Why not try…
Replacing the raisins or nuts with any seeds, chocolate chips, shredded coconut, granola or dried fruit.
Ps: All weight loss starts in the kitchen.