#2014BloggerChallenge: Healthy Sugar-Free Snacks

As those of you who read my monthly goals posts will know, one of my goals for March was to cut down on processed sugar in my diet. It's going pretty well so far - I haven't had sugar in my coffee all month, and have been good at resisting the sweet snacks too. But quite often I'll still be struck by a mid-afternoon hunger pang, and although I've been good and resisted the cakes and chocolate (and giving up sugar has made me realise how much of it is around in my office!) I'll still want something to stave off my rumbling stomach. So this is what I've been snacking on when I can't wait until dinner but chocolate biscuits are off the menu.

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Graze boxes
Graze boxes, for those who haven't heard of them, are basically cardboard boxes containing four individually portioned snacks, which could range from crackers and dip to a mini pudding with sauce. You can get healthier boxes where they won't send you the sweet treats, but I've been either palming the chocolate off onto my colleagues or simply locking them away in the depths of my work box. I haven't missed the chocolate or cakey ones yet though as the other snacks are so good. In the last couple of weeks, for example, I've had nori seaweed crackers, black pepper cashews, toasted pistachios and an awesome snack they do called 'Cheddar Gorge' which is cheese cashews, baked herb bites and salsa corn sticks. I am looking forward to getting the chocolatey ones back soon but for the moment these are enough of a treat to stop me reaching for the office biscuit tin.

Just as a sidenote, if you'd like to try a Graze box you can get your first (and 5th and 10th, if you stick around that long) box free if you use my code - just click here and your snacks will be sent to you before you know it! Full disclaimer: if you use the link, I get a pound off my next box.

Veggie sticks/mini breadsticks and hummus
This is a really good way to get more vegetables in your diet. I've always preferred veg to fruit anyway but find that having it readily available as a snack is helping a lot in terms of remembering to eat more of it. I bought a big bag of carrot sticks from Tesco and normally take a handful of those and a handful of something else - usually cucumber or pepper sticks which I prep myself - in a plastic bag, and then decant some hummus into a little plastic tub to take it to work. It takes a couple of minutes to prepare the night before and it means that when I do want a snack at work I can just grab this from the fridge.

Yoghurt
Natural or Greek yoghurt is best for this; look for ones with no added sugar. If I'm at home and I want a quick easy dessert I'll make myself a bowl of Greek yoghurt and mix in a handful of berries, which stops me craving sweet things and is also another good way to boost my vitamins if I haven't had many vegetables that day. I'm still holding out for supermarkets to do little pots of natural yoghurt similar to the six packs of fruit yoghurt you can buy though!

Fruit
I did say I wasn't big on fruit, but since axing processed sugar I've been adding it to my diet more, such as having bananas with breakfast, adding raisins to my cereal or eating handfuls of berries either in the afternoon or after tea. I always go off it a bit in the winter but as we've had some good weather recently I've been more inclined to eat things like strawberries and blueberries. Plus as it's still got that bit of sweetness about it it's making me miss the processed sugar a little less.

Whilst I will admit there have been times when I've really wanted a biscuit, I'm actually pretty proud of myself for resisting temptation so far and replacing it with stuff that is (hopefully) a lot better for me. It's certainly something I'll stick with on some level because of the benefits I'm noticing from it. I feel less tired, have more energy and am sleeping better, and my skin has improved a little as well. So I'm hoping that six weeks of trying to kick the sugar habit will encourage me to finally get into the good eating habits I've been promising myself all year...

What are your favourite healthy snacks?

2 comments:

  1. in england the first thing i subscribed to (even before a glossybox!) was Graze <3 i loved all the snacks they sent me. I always brought some nuts with me to class. And treated myself with their awesome flapjacks on some mornings.

    barbs

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  2. I do love Graze boxes and the fact that they are always adding new things to the selection but they're just a little bit too expensive for me for what you get sadly :(

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