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
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, oat cakes, 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 healthy snacks to keep at work
1) 2 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) Small handful of seeds (pumpkin and sunflower) and a chunk of cheese no bigger than a small match box
5) 2 oat cakes with cottage cheese and tomato or cucumber slices
6) Berries and 4 walnuts
7) 2 squares of dark chocolate and an apricot
8) 5 olives and a mandarin
9) Nairn's ginger oat biscuit and 2 Brazil nuts
10) Small pot of Greek yoghurt with handful of raspberries
11) Half a Bounce Ball
12) A handful of roasted chickpeas
13) Large handful of cherry tomatoes and 5 cubes of feta
14) Handful of homemade trail mix (your own mix of: seeds, nuts, toasted coconut strips and goji berries)
15) 1 seeded Ryvita with cream cheese and cucumber
All of these options are quick and easy and can easily be stored at work!
Just in case you’re wondering, if you have a food intolerance (not the same as an allergy, see below), you don’t have to remove the food forever. But it’s important to know that it’s not enough to just take the food out and not do anything about it.
If you find you have a food intolerance, this is your body telling you your gut needs some TLC to restore, rebalance and heal. Without this vital step, you’re likely to end up (over time) with more intolerances and more symptoms
HAVE YOU GOT A FOOD INTOLERANCE?
Do you experience any of the following:
Weight that won’t shift
Itchy or overly waxy ears
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FOOD INTOLERANCE & ALLERGY
Food intolerance is different to a food allergy, which is actually pretty rare in the big scheme of things. However, both an intolerance and an allergy will provoke some kind of response from the immune system.
A true food allergy produces IgE antibodies in response to a food, drink or other substance the body mistakenly thinks is attacking it. The issue can be restricted to one area (your digestive system, skin and so on) or the whole body, where the immune system triggers widespread inflammation and swelling – anaphylaxis – which can be deadly. The reaction is often immediate.
If you think you have a food allergy, you can often get tested free of charge via your GP.
If you have a food allergy, you will need to avoid the food forever.
When you have a food intolerance, it can be vey difficult to spot the problem food because the reaction can happen quite some time after eating – hours or, in some cases, days after eating something your body doesn’t like. This makes it really hard to spot connections.
These food sensitivities cause the body to produce IgG antibodies, and raised levels to specific foods can cause low level inflammation through the body and a huge variety of symptoms. Signs of food intolerance vary greatly from one person to the next but some of them are listed above.
Now, I’m betting you identify with one or two of those in the list or, if you’re unlucky, even more. True? Do you want to do something about it?
WHO SHOULD TEST?
If you suspect you have a food intolerance, testing is the first step so you can actually start putting it right. However, if the symptoms don’t bother you enough to actually do anything about it (like temporarily remove offending foods and heal the gut), you will be wasting your money.
HOW TO TEST
This kind of test is a hair test. You send a hair sample back to the lab and get the results within 3-4 weeks
WHAT DO TESTS COST?
Various tests at different price points are available, with support to go through the results with a qualified Nutritional Therapist
Watch this video to learn about the changes one of our members made thanks to the guidance of Cheltenham Nutritionist, Georgina Graham.
Watch this video for the full interview of Anne detailing her fantastic experience with Cheltenham Nutritionist, Georgina Graham and the Zest4Life Programme.