November 2011

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live in good health NourishingNibbles By Hallie Klecker Snacking is good for you. Yes, you read that correctly! Healthy snacks are the backbone of "high-performance eating," or eating to perform at your very best while maintaining balanced blood sugar, optimal weight and steady energy levels. So the next time you have a rumbling stomach between meals, do your body good with one of these nutritious nibbles. Got a Sweet Tooth? Snack on pitted dates stuffed with raw almonds. Sweet and soft, dates are nature's candy. Almonds offer fi ber and protein as well as healthy fat, making this a snack guaranteed to satisfy in more ways than one. Need a Refreshing Pick-Me-Up? Try an avocado and berry smoothie for a boost of healthy fat, fi ber and complex carbohydrates. Though it may sound like an exotic combination, blending a scoop of ripe avocado with a handful of frozen berries and a splash of almond or rice milk makes for a deliciously refreshing treat. Klecker is a certifi ed nutrition educator and former personal chef. For more recipe inspiration, meal ideas and nutrition tips, visit her blog at or check out her new gluten-free, dairy- free cookbook "The Pure Kitchen," on! Craving Some Crunch? Dip celery sticks in hummus or bean dip. Raw celery contains just 15 calories per cup while providing loads of vitamin C and other antioxi- dants. Dips made from beans are not only tasty, but rich in fi ber and generally low in fat as well. Want to Indulge? Make your own "pumpkin pie bowl." Simply top canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie fi lling) with chopped pecans, a drizzle of honey or maple syrup, and a dash of cinnamon. Pumpkin is packed with beta-carotene, an antioxidant that acts as both a disease fi ghter and an anti-infl ammatory, while cinnamon may help to balance blood sugar and curb cravings for sweets. 12 BRAVA Magazine November 2011 Photos by Brittney Scharine

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