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December is a time when we sit back, enjoy life and over indulge. Sugar is on pretty served on tap over the festive period and now many of us are looking to make some sensible, healthy swaps.
This said, you don’t have to live on water and dry crackers to get healthy but we have to tell you, the only way to kick a sugar habit is to cut right back.
This won’t be easy but over time your body will crave sugar less and you will feel so much better.
We have had a look at some delicious alternatives to sugary snacks and drinks that will keep your cravings for the white stuff at bay.
Porridge with sliced fruit isn’t just a brain boosting breakfast but can also be a filling snack. Keep a stash at work and you won’t be tempted to reach for that chocolate cake.
If you want a healthy snack with a naughty edge, go for rice cakes with peanut butter and chopped banana.
Popcorn can be a great, healthy treat. We aren’t talking about the mega buckets at the cinema but instead fresh popcorn made at home with a sprinkle of cinnamon. Give it a go; we think you will like it, a lot.
Organic oatcakes with hummus and slices of cucumber make a protein packed snack that will keep hunger locked up until lunchtime.
Bananas are great on cereal and smoothies but peel and chop ripe ones into bite-sized chunks and you have crunchy treats that are full of Vitamins B6 and C, potassium, and a serving of fibre too. Frozen grapes are pretty good too.
For an on the run snack that is as easy to make as it to eat, go for homemade trail mix. Throw together coconut flakes, dried fruit, goji berries, raw ruts and seeds and you have an instant, delicious snack that will keep you away from the vending machine. Just watch portion sizes.
Keep a stock of frozen berries in the freezer and add them to low-fat Greek yoghurt for an evening treat. This tastes great but it’s low in sugar and high in protein so will keep you fuller, for longer.
Chunks of melon, strawberries and grapes make tasty fruit kebabs and top up that all-important five a day quota.
Pumpkin and sunflower seeds with a handful of nuts are a cracking combination.
For a real taste bud tingle go for an ice-cold smoothie packed with mango, banana, kiwi, cucumber, spinach, a splash of coconut milk and a little lemongrass. Delicious and refreshing.
Low fat milk with a little honey can give you the sweet hit you need without blowing the plan out of the water.
For a sugar free savory winner, how about sliced apple and pear with a layer of low fat cream cheese?
If you are having a bad day and only chocolate will do, we will let you have a square or two of good quality dark chocolate, but don’t eat it all.
Got a winning combination? Let us know what healthy snacks work for you.