New habits with new snacks

All right, let’s be honest: How many times have you gone in the fridge, looking for that delicious snack — something simple to hold you over maybe until lunch or dinner or to fill that little gap in your day? Maybe a little crunch, or something salty or even a little sweet — depends on the day.

All right, let’s be honest: How many times have you gone in the fridge, looking for that delicious snack — something simple to hold you over maybe until lunch or dinner or to fill that little gap in your day?

Maybe a little crunch, or something salty or even a little sweet — depends on the day.

And how many times have you looked in that cupboard or refrigerator of yours and it hasn’t been there?

Well, that’s because you didn’t make anything.

So the bag of chips end up getting consumed or maybe just a donut will do.

And there goes all your anticipated health goals for the day.

The thing is that making simple changes in your snacking habits can have a strong impact on your health.

Many of us have these little addictive habits to break up our day, whether it be going out for a cigarette or looking for something in the refrigerator.

If you struggle with breaking a bad habit or are constantly grabbing the snack foods that really aren’t doing anything for you, there are some simple snacks you can stock up on in your refrigerator to keep you going through the day in a more healthful way.

First, lets talk blueberries.

One ingredient, no need to prepare. Just rinse and have ready in the refrigerator.

Done.

They are high in antioxidants, delicious and, according to the University of Michigan Cardiovascular Center, we’re now talking aiding in lowering cholesterol, and reducing abdominal fat.

And how about some sugar snap peas? Boring I know.

But they are high in fibre, vitamins A, C and K, and they help build a healthy immune system, regulate digestion and are good for the heart.

Toss with some chopped red pepper and drizzle a little sesame oil into the mix with a pinch of sea salt and sesame seeds and you have yourself a nice little sesame sugar snap snack, I like to call it.

If you prepare some pre-chopped or rinsed fruits and vegetables ready to grab at the beginning of your week, then when you’re ready to grab something, they are right there for you!

Start conditioning yourself to just make a better choice to fill that need and you will go far, I promise.

Another great snack to always keep on hand in the refrigerator, put out for guests or the kids is some toasted cinnamon almond pecan bites.

They contain heart-healthy, blood-sugar stabilizing coconut oil and cinnamon with a sprinkle of sea salt. It makes a nice sweet, salty, crunchy snack.

It’s the perfect addition to your new healthful snacking habits and one you’ll enjoy opening the refrigerator to.

Toasted cinnamon almond pecan bites

Yields 2 Cups (4½ cup servings)

1 cup almonds

1 cup pecans

2 tbsp coconut oil, melted

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350F. Toss nuts with coconut, sea salt and cinnamon. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until desired crunch is reached.

Remove and allow to cool, sprinkling with an additional pinch of sea salt and cinnamon.

Kristin Fraser, BSc, is a holistic nutritionist and local freelance writer. Her column appears every second Thursday. She can be reached at kristin@somethingtochewon.ca.

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