Aaah! What to have? What to have?
When you get a case of the munchies between meals, you’ve got to have a plan in place. Without a plan, it’s going to make it very difficult to eat well and stick to any nutritional goals that you may have set.
A study that looked at data from a National Nutrition Survey from nearly 11,000 Australian adults showed that 36% of daily energy intake was from ‘extra foods’ otherwise referred to as ‘non-core foods’. The non-core foods that contributed most to this alarming figure were fried potatoes, cakes, muffins, beer, sugar-sweetened soft drinks and meat pies. When you consider that the Australian Dietary Guidelines state that ‘if chosen, they should be eaten only sometimes and in small amounts’, they definitely were not thinking 36% of daily energy intake. Snacking itself is not necessarily a problem but the choice of snacks obviously is. Don’t let your non-core food consumption get anywhere near this number. Plan your snacks.
The following foods are great options for snacks and packed full of the nutrition you actually want:
- 132 kJ = 1 medium carrot
- 244 kJ = ½ Lebanese cucumber + ¼ red capsicum + 2 tablespoons low fat quark
- 270 kJ = punnet of strawberries (250 grams)
- 272 kJ = 1 medium carrot + 2 tablespoons low fat quark
- 284 kJ = 2 Vitawheat crackers + 1 tablespoon low fat quark + ¼ medium tomato
- 292 kJ = 1 small boiled egg
- 321 kJ = 2 Vitawheat crackers + 1/8 avocado + ¼ medium tomato
- 333 kJ = 1 medium apple
- 368 kJ = regular skim coffee, no sugar
- 383 kJ = 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds + 1 tablespoon dried cranberries
- 401 kJ = 8 almonds + 1 tablespoon sultanas
- 443 kJ = 2 Vitawheat crackers + 1 tablespoon low fat quark + 1 tablespoon Sandhurst 97% fat free sundried tomatoes
- 452 kJ = 2 Ryvita crackers + 1/8 avocado+ ½ medium tomato
- 462 kJ = 1 medium banana
- 484 kJ = 2 Ryvita crackers + 2 tablespoons low fat quark + ½ medium tomato
- 574 kJ = 1 slice Burgen Soy-Lin bread + 1/8 avocado + ½ tomato
- 593 kJ = 1 slice Burgen Soy-Lin bread + 1 tablespoon low fat ricotta + ¼ punnet strawberries
Source: NUTTAB 2010 and Nutrition Information Panels
Note: Kilojoule content may vary slightly depending on what you define as for example, medium and what brand you use
To put these figures into context, consider that a 45 gram packet of chips is approximately 1000 kJ and an average muffin can easily be over 2000 kJ. Not to mention the higher amount of salt and sugar found in these foods.
A packet of chips and a muffin at work? Over 3300 kJ = 😦
A skim coffee, punnet of strawberries and a banana? 1100 kJ = 🙂