Dietitian approved recipes, healthy eating notes and ebooks

Snack Attack

To snack or not to snack? The irony about healthy weight management is that weight gain can be cause by eating either too much or too little. Finding the balance is the key to successful weight loss or maintenance. Snacking between meals is a common pitfall. Some people do not snack at all, leaving the achievement of their daily nutritional intake down to the consumption of one or two large meals per day. Others keep their main meals to appropriate portions by snacking in between but tend to snack on energy dense, nutrient empty foods such as crisps or baked good. Neither of these scenarios is effective when it comes to weight loss or maintenance.

There is an important role for snacking in weight maintenance, obesity prevention, health promotion and disease management. The key to snacking is to limit snacks to 2 -3 food items of small portion sizes. Snack foods should be selected for their nutrient density verses energy content. High salt, fried or sugar laden foods and beverages should be avoided.

Snacks should be small and nutritious and the purpose of a snack should be to:

  • achieve an adequate daily nutrient intake (fibre, micronutrients)
  • achieve an optimal fruit intake
  • improve blood glucose levels
  • avoid extreme hunger at meal times
  • promote sustained energy between meals
  • reduce excessive food portions at main meals

While snacking is encouraged for many health benefits, grazing throughout the day is discouraged. Give the body 2 – 4 hours to process a meal before the next one. Mindful eating is a good practice to learn. Mindless grazing sabotages all efforts in the nutrition department. Even healthy foods can be eaten in excess when trying to lose weight.



Whole-Wheat Gingerbread Buttons

These whole-wheat gingerbread buttons are a good example of why it is better to bake your own festive treats rather than buy commercially produced baked goods. Baking from scratch at home gives you more control and knowledge. Recipes can be adjusted in many ways to reduce sugar, fat and other nutrient empty calories. Knowing exactly what goes into your home bakes is an added bonus. Baking at homes offers the

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Banana Split Brekkie

A banana split, while perhaps old fashioned, and typically served as dessert can be given a healthy make-over. Bananas are often listed as one of few fruits that kids, and sometimes even adults, enjoy. Why not take a simple banana to the next level of enjoyment. Rich in nutrients, fibre and protein, a healthy banana split brekkie could surely entice breakfast skippers and lazy eaters. Bananas are rich in energy and often

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Banana Ice Cream

Banana Ice Cream! There can simply be no simpler recipe. I love bananas and I do enjoy ice cream so this is the perfect summer treat that is both nutritious and delicious … a winner combination in the mind of a dietitian! All you need is to make sure you have frozen bananas on hand. If you want to make banana ice cream for your family, perhaps sneak one banana

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Safari Just Fruity Animals {Tasted & Trusted}

Just Fruity Animals …   Now, i think you would be hard pressed to find a convenient healthy treat as cute as these! A great lunch box filler or after school snack, these fruity rhinos, elephants, lions, hippos and buffaloes are sure to please any kid. I just loved these when I saw them and wanted to share my opinion and nutritional analysis of them. It is important to reduce

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Smoothie Design

Smoothie design is half the preparation work done. While already quick to prepare, smoothie making can be even quicker if you plan ahead. Simply design a few recipes using the Smoothie Design infographic guide below which will help you create a good balance of nutrients with sensible portion control. It is important to be careful not to create a kilojoule bomb of a smoothie if you are trying to lose

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After School Snack: Toasties

A healthy after school snack is necessary for growing bodies and busy minds. These snacks are a nutritional opportunity for the support growth and brain health but many moms tell me they battle to find healthy snack options to fill the gap between school and dinner time. This often leads to the overuse of convenient store bought snack items. While crisps and biscuits are obvious poor choices, many snack items such as cereal bars are

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Crazy Shake: Banana-Choc

I am sharing this Crazy Shake : Banana-Choc recipe today in honour of ROALD DAHL! It is Roald Dahl day (13 Sptember 2016) an the well known and well loved author would have been 100 years old today! A huge fan of ROALD DAHL since I was a young child, I couldn’t miss the opportunity to be part of the festivities. As this very talented author must have been somewhat crazy to

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Date Paste How To

Date paste is my latest and greatest Pinterest success! Already a fan of dates, I did not need much convincing to give this recipe a go. Incredibly easy to make, date paste makes for a tasty sugar substitute. While it does have an energy value due to the natural carbohydrate content of dates, it is not nutrient empty and very little paste is required for the reward of its incredible

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Peanut & Raisin Snack Domes

Snack Domes are a twist on energy balls I stumbled upon while using a tablespoon measure to scoop up the mixture to achieve equal size portions. (See the graphic below for this time saving trick). Snack time is often the time when people consume high fat foods with added salt or sugar because it is convenient or in some cases cheaper than the healthier option. People also tend to feel like

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Chili Chocolate Popcorn

This chili chocolate popcorn is a conventional healthy snack with a taste twist. Popcorn is a high fibre snack alternative to crisps. Home made is best in order to control portion size and the addition of unwanted kilojoules, but popcorn can be flavoured creatively. Think herbs and spices which can be added to a little canola oil for popping. Snacking is often where the hidden fats and sugars creep into our

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Spiced Hot Chocolate

Spiced hot chocolate is the perfect substitute for a late night snack of chocolate, crisps or biscuits. Rich in calcium, it will still satisfy your chocolate craving. If chili is not your thing, add vanilla paste or chai spice. Milk is rich in calcium and protein which makes this spiced hot chocolate a nutritious after dinner snack. It will keep the midnight hunger at bay and prevent overeating on snack

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Simple Healthy Snacks

Simple healthy snacks are an essential part of a healthy diet. It is important not to undo healthy eating at meal times with excessive snacking on non-nutritious foods. Pinterest is full of ideas but all too often we pin rather than do! Tried & tested from Pinterest, these simple healthy snacks are both nutritious and quick to prepare! It is easy to make the mistake that convenience products and shop bought snacks

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Pocket Friendly Trail Mix

Hiking is a great way to enjoy the outdoors, socialize and exercise at the same time. It is perfect for family outings or group exercise. Whether it is a day hike or part of a camping trip, hiking expends a lot of energy, making regular snacking and hydration important. Try this pocket friendly trail mix for a tasty, nutritious and energy rich hiking snack! Why is it pocket friendly? Because M&Ms

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Sugar Free Jelly Fun

I recently posted about treats verses snacks and wanted to share an easy way to create novel and fun foods that can be enjoyed as much a treat foods without the added sugar. The sugar free jelly ideas below can be enjoyed as part of a healthy snack, a healthy dessert option or at a kids party. Barney Sugar Free jelly powder is a great product for making sugar free desserts

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Cereal Fingers

As these Cereal fingers are made from iron fortified cereals, they make for an iron rich snack. Iron deficiency results in poor concentration, delayed brain development and fatigue, all of which negatively impacts both learning and physical activity. Lunch boxes should make a significant nutrient contribution to children and adults alike. This nutritious lunch box bake can be made with oats and any combination of breakfast cereals in your pantry. Just remember,

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Hummus made easy

I love chickpeas and therefore I love hummus. Chickpeas are a good source of plant protein and fibre and can be added to many a dish or simply roasted for a healthy snack. Adding chickpeas to soups, stews, curries, salads an roasted vegetables is an easy way to add more fibre to your family meals. Canned chickpeas are a great pantry staple but you can also cook up a large

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Easter Egg Toast Fun

Egg toast is a great breakfast option and enjoyed by most. This quick meal can take on many varieties and designs … scrambled egg, poach egg, French toast, boiled egg with toast soldiers … and even egg in toast!  As this takes a little more time and creativity, it is perfect for novel occasions when you want to present something  little more special. The cut out shape has endless possibilities! To

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Healthy Snacks : Snail Naartjie

The inclusion of healthy snacks in the diets of children is very important in the prevention of dietary deficiencies and overeating at meal times. When it comes to eating a variety of nutritious foods, however, busy little bodies and picky eaters may require a little extra encouragement. Sometimes a little creativity is necessary but it need not be time consuming. Watch the video below to learn how to transform a naartjie into

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Basil Pesto Creamed

Basil pesto adds a punch of flavour to any dish but can be expensive with its traditional ingredient of pine nuts. Eaten in large amounts, it would also contribute a lot of excess fat and kilojoules. This is not ideal as it is unlikely to be the main ingredient of a dish but rather an added extra or a dip for snack foods. By combining the main ingredient, being basil,

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Apple Butter

Apple butter is a tasty topper for oats or peanut butter toast and makes for a nutritious, naturally sugar free substitute to sugar, jam or syrup. Made with cinnamon, this apple butter is easy to prepare and adds great flavour without the need for added sugar. Adding sugar to cereals, porridge, teas and coffees can add up to a large intake of empty and unnecessary energy. The World Health Organisation (WHO)

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Health4You Most Popular 2016 Award
Health4You Most Popular 2016 Award