Healthy Snack Swaps To Make Today

Healthy Snack Swaps To Make Today

What should you be throwing out and what should you be adding into your diet? We asked the experts what healthy food swaps you should be making this January – this is their advice…

Kim Pearson, Nutritionist and Weight-Loss Specialist

Crisps For Olives

Kettle Chips Lightly Salted 50g, 233kcal
SWAP FOR: 10 black or green olives, 120kcal
We all know that deep fried potatoes never make for a healthy snacking option. To get your savoury snack fix, reach for a handful of olives instead, which are high in healthy fats and provide vitamin E. They also have anti-inflammatory benefits, having the opposite effect of those salty crisps. Choose the unpitted variety, they’ll take longer to eat, giving your brain time to recognise when you’re full.

Sandwiches For Oatcakes

M&S Prawn Sandwich, 347kcal
SWAP FOR: Oatcakes topped with half an avocado and smoked salmon, 300kcal
This protein and healthy fats-rich option makes for a much more balanced snack compared with a starchy, carb-dominant sandwich. By avoiding shop-bought sandwiches you’ll also cut out preservatives and other additives used in mass-produced breadmaking.

Chocolate Bars For Healthy Protein Bar

Pret A Manger Choc Bar, 366 kcal
SWAP FOR: Pulsin Vanilla Choc Chip Protein Booster, 230kcal
A Pret Choc bar contains a whopping 25g (6.5 teaspoons) sugar per bar, so swap it for a Pulsin Vanilla Choc Chip bar, which contains 13g protein and just 5g sugar per bar. It’s always worth scrutinising labels carefully as many ‘protein bars’ and ‘energy balls’ have hidden sugar, despite them often being from natural sources. 

Biscuits For Berries

2 Chocolate Hobnobs, 158kcal
SWAP FOR: Handful of blueberries and 25g nuts, 180kcal
If you need an afternoon tea break, it can be tempting to reach for the biscuits. But the momentary sugar rush will be followed by a crash, leaving you struggling for energy later. Instead, opt for a handful of antioxidant-rich blueberries and nutrient dense nuts, which are a great option for sustained energy. Yes, the calorie intake is slightly higher with this swap, but the calories are loaded with goodness instead of refined sugar.

Soft Drinks For Sparkling Water

San Pellegrino Lemon, 130kcal
SWAP FOR: Sparkling water with a splash of lime juice, less than 10kcal
Even healthy-looking sparkling drinks can be packed with sugar and provide little to no nutritional value. If a glass of water is just too boring for you, opt for a glass of sparkling water with a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime, instead.

Fruit Juice For Infused Water

Innocent Apple Juice 330ml, 147kcal
SWAP FOR: Water infused with cucumber and mint, less than 10kcal
It might seem like a ‘healthy’ option, but one 330ml bottle of apple juice contains an incredible 35g (nearly nine teaspoons) of sugar. Yes, it’s all natural, but the body can’t tell the difference between natural and added sugars. If you need a refreshing hit in the morning, consider investing in an infusing water bottle. Pack it with your favourite fruits or vegetable to make water infusions that hydrate, taste great and contain zero sugar. Grapefruit is a great choice in the morning, while cucumber and mint make for a refreshing afternoon pick-me-up.

Ice Cream For Coconut Yoghurt

Half Cup Of Haagen Dazs Chocolate Peanut Butter, 340kcal
SWAP FOR: Coconut Collaborative Blueberry Yoghurt, 120g pot, 158kcal
Swap refined sugar, dairy based ice cream for a dairy-free yoghurt treat such as Coconut Collaborative’s blueberry yoghurt. Creamy and satisfying, and with less than a third of the sugar per serving. 

Helen Wang, Director of Abakus Foods

Marshmallows For Red Dates

3 Pascall’s marshmallows, 48kcal
SWAP FOR: Red dates, 58kcal
Try nature’s marshmallows which comes in the form of Red Dates. They have a delicious, soft and squishy texture which resembles a marshmallow and while they might be higher in calories, they are naturally sweet without any added sugar. They are also better than brown dates, with only half the amount of sugar and calories per serving. 

Alcohol For Kombucha

Budweiser beer, 330ml, 120kcal
SWAP FOR: Rude Health Komucha, 250ml, 16kcal
While this isn’t necessarily about the calories, komucha is the slightly alcoholic drink to swap with your normal tipple and comes with lots of beneficial fermented bacteria to support your gut health. Your gut is the door to a healthy immune system and it is also where happy-hormones are made, so this is a great choice, with the added bonus of no morning-after hangover.

Higher Nature Cereal Bars For Paleo Balls

Kellogg’s Strawberry Nutrigrain Bar, 130kcal
SWAP FOR: Yumbles Raw Brownie Paleo Bliss Bites, 89kcal per bite
Need to grab breakfast on the go? Instead of opting for a high carb and sugar grain-based bar grab a high protein paleo inspired bar or ball. If you have time, make a breakfast berry smoothie adding hemp protein, coconut oil and nut butter for a superfood boost that helps keep you on the ball until lunch time.

Suzy Glaskie, Functional Medicine Certified Health Coach & Founder of Peppermint Wellness

Milk Chocolate For Dark Chocolate

Cadbury Dairy Milk Chocolate Bar, 100g, 534kcal
SWAP FOR: Green & Black’s Organic 85% Dark Chocolate Bar, 100g, 607kcal
If it’s chocolate you’re after, gradually accustom your taste buds to dark chocolate (85% or more cacao). It may seem a little bitter at first but be patient! Give your taste buds a chance to adapt and you’ll be enjoying its intense cacao hit by the end of January. While it’s slightly more calorific, the good news is that dark chocolate is brilliant for your health and has been shown to not only enhance your brain and heart health but also your mood. Plus, you’ll likely switch to having a few squares a day, rather than the whole bar!

White Onion For Spring Onion

One medium white onion, 44kcal
SWAP FOR: Spring onion, 100g, 32kcal
Onion and garlic both contain concentrated amounts of carbohydrates called fructans which can be difficult for some people to digest. Fructans are fermented in the large intestine and can cause excessive bloating in people with sensitive guts. Restricting garlic and onion can be very difficult as it’s added to many sauces, gravies and used as flavouring. Try to substitute chives, spring onion (only the green part) garlic infused oil and asafoetida (which is a pungent spice commonly used in Indian cooking).

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