Tea-Break Special: Quick Healthy Snack Ideas for the Evening
Ate lunch 2-3 hours ago and obssessing over what to eat with tea without sabotaging your healthy eating plan? You've come to the right place. First of all, you are not alone. Not only is the 5 to 9pm time band a massive dieting Waterloo for most of us, it is also responsible for most health and fitness sabotage. It is in this phase that our resolve to exercise weakens and our iron-clad meal plan is tossed out the window. Fret not. Today, we're bringing some quick and healthy snack ideas to your rescue.
Quick Healthy Snacks that You Can Buy
Office canteens, neighbourhood restaurants, cornershops, and convenience stores. These are the places we visit when home-cooked snacks aren't available. Here are some quick snacks you can easily rely on when feeling peckish in the evenings:
- Idli – 2 pieces: 155 calories. This count does not include sambhar and chutney. Although coconut chutney is quite high on fat, a little dash on the side with a small bowl of sambhar won't do much harm. These two additions will take the calorie count a little higher (by roughly 80 calories).
- Any egg white snack: 40 to 80 calories depending on preparation. This also includes breakfast options. You could eat a double egg white omelet, or a boiled egg sandwich. Remember to account for the slices, dressing, and any other ingredients that you might include in the sandwich or omelet.
- Roasted chicken breast or drumstick (without skin): Approx. 115 calories.
- Glucose biscuits. These are low on calories, include milk sugars and are filling without being too heavy. Eat just 4-5 with a cup of tea and you'll be set back by about 250 calories.
Quick Healthy Snacks that You Can Make
If you are proactive about carrying your own snacks from home, then the sky is the limit. Here are some healthy snack ideas that will take an hour or two over weekends for preparation and just a few minutes a day to pack.
- Mixed dry fruits and nuts - one handful per serving will give you about 200 calories, and a whole lot of nutrition.
- Stir-fried chicken breast nuggets. Carry a small salad with these nuggets mixed with some greens or tomatoes and a basic extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper dressing. Good for about 300 calories, this snack will keep you full till dinner.
- Peanut butter and honey/mashed banana sandwich. This is a great snack for those of you who make exercise a regular feature of their lives. A whole grain bread sandwich with 1 teaspoon chunky peanut butter layered with half a ripe mashed banana is a delicious snack. Add a little extra taste with a few chocolate chips. This will cost you about 250-300 calories, but the effects will be filling and nutritious.
- Fruit salads - approximately 150 calories. Rely on seasonal fruits, natural sweeteners or spices, and maybe some skimmed yogurt to add that refreshing feel.
Roasted nuts, dried figs, yogurt smoothies, dry crackers with egg white toppings, berry preserves over whole grain bread, carrot muffins and spinach bread...the list of quick and healthy snacks is endless. Remember to include ingredients like lean meat, whole grains, nuts, fruits, and dairy to your tea-break snacks and you'll never sabotage your healthy eating plans again.
*Image courtesy: © Thinkstock photos/ Getty Images
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