When it comes to snacks (scratch that, when it comes to ANY kind of eating), it’s important to include some protein and, ideally, some fibre. Why? You need protein (and fibre) to keep your blood sugar stable, so you’ll have a constant supply of energy to get you through to lunch or your evening meal. There’s also the small matter of the energy crash (and, I’m sorry, weight gain) when snacks cause blood sugar to spike. Unfortunately, many of the snacks we’d routinely eat fall into this latter category – including crisps, chocolate bars and many so-called healthy granola bars.
So what can you eat? What you pack for snack will depend on the facilities you have at work. No fridge? You’re going to want to pack your snacks every day from home. In practice, most of the people I see in clinic have access to a fridge. Perfect! This means you can keep small tubs of goodies like hummus and cottage cheese in the fridge and store bulkier items like rice cakes, oatcakes, jars of nut butters, assorted bags of nuts or protein bars in your desk drawer (that is what the big one bottom left is for, isn’t it?).
Here are my top 5 healthy snacks to keep at work
1) 2x oatcakes with sugar-free cashew or almond nut butter (superior to peanut butter but, hey, if peanut’s all you’ve got, don’t worry).
2) Hummus with crudités like raw carrot, cucumber, cauliflower, peppers, courgette, celery – choose ones you like but go easy on the cauliflower if you have a thyroid problem.
3) Fruit and nuts. An apple slices with nut butter of your choice (or if this is too messy for you, apple or pear and a small handful of nuts).
4) A small handful of seeds (pumpkin and sunflower) and a chunk of cheese no bigger than a small matchbox.
5) 2x oatcakes with cottage cheese and tomato or cucumber slices.