fresh-fruits

It is on most people’s new years resolutions to eat more healthily, but then they struggle to do so. I think they struggle to because most people have a lack of understanding about what healthy and unhealthy food looks like. The other reason is that a lot of people assume they cannot afford to eat healthily because unhealthy food is much cheaper. The other reason people choose unhealthy food is because they say they do not have the time to cook healthy food, and so it is easier to buy prepared food, which ironically is so much more expensive than preparing your own food.

However, and here is my challenge: it comes to a point when you realise that eating unhealthily has negative effects long term for your body. You not giving it the nourishment it needs, and in the long run you could save yourself from going to doctors if you are healthy, and lastly eating more healthily makes you feel better because it IS better for you.

We eat three meals a day (Breakfast, lunch, and dinner) and then we have snacks during the day to keep our sugar levels and our concentration levels going strong.

I am going to share some ideas for healthy snacks and drinks that we have during the day. Some of these snacks are freezer friendly which is ideal! We do not eat all of these everyday, but these are just some different ideas:

Healthy Snack ideas

  1. Chocolate Almond Clusters: Becareful of these! They are so delicious, that it will be hard to keep it down to a snack! They so delicious.
  2. Cacao Almond Date Balls: These offer an immediate energy boost! Make them!!! They are amazing. This recipe made 28 energy balls, which has lasted us 2 weeks of snacks for us (1 a day)

a2-460x6583. Veggie sticks: Simply cut up some carrot sticks, cucumber sticks, peppers. Whatever vegetables you like really!!! You can eat it plain, or if you a dip person then they go well with hummus, or tzatziki dip.

4. Vanilla Pumpkin Seed ClustersI have never made these, but they sound delicious.

5. Fruit: We always have fruit in our fridge and try and eat at least two fruits a day. We often incorporate fruit into our breakfast when we have granola and yogurt, we normally chop up an apple or a banana and add that in. We enjoy peeling an orange to put with our lunch, or sometimes we just have a peeled orange after dinner for dessert.

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6. Nuts and seeds: We buy about 2kgs of nuts a month (almonds, cashews, pistachios, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, gogi berries, sunflower seeds). Out of this we divide it up – some days, we pack in 2-3 handfuls for a snack at work. I also make homemade granola for breakfast during the week, and I usually use them to bake a few things during the month.

7. Banana Bread: When we make banana bread, it lasts about a week in our home and we pack in a big slice into our lunch boxes, for about a week. They also freeze really well, so you could make a few banana breads and freeze them with different ingredients. Some optional things to add: seeds, nuts, chocolate chips, fruit pieces etc.

8. Granola Bars/Energy Bars: These are freezable. Delicious treat!

9. Apple Peach Fig BarsI have never made these, however, i want to make them soon. Again, like most of these recipes, you can take the foundation of the recipe and add in different fruits.

10. Apple with peanut butter: One of our quick go to snacks these days is to cut up an apple and just smear some peanut butter onto it.

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11. Popcorn: I’ve heard that popcorn isn’t very healthy, but it’s delicious, cheap, and like I always say – it’s better for you than a packet of chips!!

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Healthy Drink ideas

  1. Water: I have put water as number 1 on this list because this is the number 1 drink in our lives. Since moving to Ireland, we have chosen to only stock water in our home. We drink water all day, and only buy fruit juice about once a month for a bit of fresh deliciousness. We buy coke about once a month as well because we love it, but the sugar content is so high that to be honest I would prefer to waste the calories on a slice of cake! Another way to improve the taste of water is to add in a slice of lemon, or some mint.

glass-of-water2. Smoothies: We drink a lot of smoothies. We have them for breakfast sometimes, and I have them for a quick and filling lunch sometimes. They really delicious. My favourite go to smoothie is a berry smoothie (ice, handful of frozen berries, 1 banana, almond milk/milk, a spoon of peanut butter/almond butter, handful of nuts)

3. Cocao Hot Chocolate: This is a new find. It’s starting to get cold here in Ireland, and I’ve been craving hot chocolate, so I make cacao hot chocolate (almond milk/milk, 2 tsp cacao powder/coco powder, hot water, tsp honey)

4. Fresh raw juices: I struggle to get loads of fresh vegetables and fruit into me so sometimes if I’m feeling peckish I look in my fridge and pulse together some fresh vegetables and drink it. The number 1 easiest and best way to get some vegetables into you! (beetroot, cucumber, kale, lettuce, carrots, fruits…. there’s countless and endless recipes when you start looking)

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5. Fresh fruit juice: Try and stay away from fruit juice from the shops as they are sadly but truthfully PACKED with so much sugar. We have stopped drinking fruit juice and rather stick to water. But sometimes we miss juice, so then we just make some of our own fruit juice. We don’t have a juicer, so I make mine the long way haha! I’ll share a quick example: I will pulse up 1 apple with water, but then there is a heap of pulp, so i put it through a sieve and pure apple juice will strain out. However, you CAN drink it with all the pulp – it’s so much healthier for you. But sometimes we just want clear fruit juice.

You will notice that we eat “carbs” and “sugar” everyday, but they are refined carbohydrates and refined sugars, which are healthy for you. They keep our sugar levels strong and we feel nourished and healthy everyday. We do not get sugar cravings very often, but we are normal too, so when we do feel like pizza or an ice cream we have them :) But on a day to day basis we just try and make healthy choices for us. I used to get migraines, which seem to have cleared up, and my skin is looking clear and spotless.

 There you have it! Some healthy snack and drink ideas! Happy prepping and happy eating! Cheers to being healthy!!!! I hope that these tips have been helpful. 

Love Steph xx

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Written by Stephanie Lisa Joyce

Hello, I am Steph, and I am the owner of The Rolling Pin, a food blog which is designed to inspire YOU to either keep getting creative in the kitchen or to help you to start getting creative in the kitchen.