By Roopali Gupta
June 1, 2017: Snacks can be perfectly healthy if we make good choices. Here are a few that are less than 100 calories.
You felt full after you had ?your lunch. But after an ?hour or so, you?re ready ?to eat again! That?s because your? body has used up the energy you gained from your lunch. Should you eat again? ?No snacking between meals!? You?ve heard this quite often. So you are con- fused. But snacks can be perfectly healthy if we make good choices. We should only be aware that many common snacks are high in fat, sugar and sodium, and if these foods are taken frequently, they can affect our health.
Snacks or in-between meals are, in fact, good for us as it is always advisable to take at least 5-6 small meals a day. This distribution also helps in preventing sudden and drastic changes in blood sugar level. Instead of fat and calorie-rich burger, pizza, doughnuts and chocolates, why don?t you take a fruit, fruit-based drink, sprouts or raw vegetables, such as celery, carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, green pepper, green beans, cucumber, with a low-fat dip. Low-fat bread and muffins, non-sugared cereals, snack mixes made with popcorn and whole grain cereal, low-fat yogurt with fresh, frozen or canned fruit, shakes with low-fat milk or yogurt and fruit and unsweetened fruit juices can be the best choices.
But if you?re tired of these snacks, maybe it?s time to get cooking. Try these snack recipes, which are healthy as they contain less than 100 calories.
#1 Sweet & sour summer salad
Ingredients: 1 cucumber finely sliced; 1 tomato finely sliced; onion slices; lemon juice according to taste; honey 1 tsp; salt according to taste.
Method: Mix the vegetables in a deep bowl. Add honey, lemon juice and salt. Have it garnished with mint leaves.
Variation: You can also add roasted sesame seeds (til seeds).
Calories per serving: 62 Kcals
#2 Low-cal bhelpuri
Ingredients: Puffed rice (murmura) 1 cup; 1 small onion finely chopped; 1 small tomato finely chopped; tamarind chutney 1 tsp; green chutney 1 tsp; salt according to taste; chopped coriander leaves for garnishing.
Method: Mixed all ingredients in a large deep bowl. Toss till well blended. Eat it immediately before it gets soggy.
Calories per serving: 85 Kcals
#3 Celery garlic toast
Ingredients: Whole wheat bread 4 slices. Coarsely ground into a paste one-fourth cup chopped celery, 3 garlic cloves and black pepper. Salt to taste.
Method: Apply the ground celery paste equally on all four bread toasts. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 1800 C for 10 minutes or till the roasts are evenly browned. Cut into halves, sprinkle black pepper powder.
Calories per serving: 97 Kcals
#4 Fried cabbage salad
Ingredients: Cabbage, finely shredded half cup; mustard and cumin seeds one-fourth tsp each; dried red chilli 1; a few curry leaves; salt to taste; lemon juice according to taste; coriander leaves for garnishing.
Method: Add salt and lemon juice in shredded cabbage and keep it aside for 10 minutes. Heat oil in a pan and put cumin and mustard seeds in it. When they crackle, add curry leaves and dried red chilli. Finally add the shredded cabbage and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Serve hot garnished with coriander leaves.
Variation: Roasted and powdered groundnut powder can be added to it.
Calories per serving: 40 Kcals
Ingredients: Low-fat curd 1 cup; cardamom powder 1 tsp; low-fat milk 2 tbls; sugar (or substitutes like Equal, Sugarfree) 2 tsp; a few saffron strands.
Method: Mix all the ingredients and blend well. Chill for at least 2-3 hours.
Calories per serving: 95 Kcals
#6 Cucumber raita
Ingredients: Low-fat fresh curd 1 cup; cucumber, grated one- fourth cup; cumin powder one-fourth tsp; red chilli powder one-fourth tsp; salt to taste; coriander for garnishing.
Method: Beat curds till smooth. Add all ingredients except coriander leaves. Mix well and chill for an hour. Serve garnished with coriander leaves.
Calories per serving: 42 Kcals
#7 Healthy tomato soup
Ingredients: Chopped tomatoes 1 cup; moong dal 1 tsp; chopped onions 1 tsp; whole wheat flour 1 tsp; warm milk 2 tsp; butter one-fourth tsp; salt and pepper.
Method: Boil the tomatoes with dal in 1 cup of water till cooked. Cool to room temperature and blend in a mixer to a smooth pulp. Strain. Melt the butter in a pan and fry chopped onions till light brown. Add the strained mixture. Mix wheat flour with a little water and add in the soup. Boil for 2 minutes while stirring continuously. Add milk, salt and pepper. Serve hot.
Calories per serving: 52 Kcals
#8 Crunchy healthy salad
Ingredients: Puffed wheat half cup; half chopped cucumber; Chopped tomato 1 tbsp; chopped onion 1 tbsp; chopped green chilli, chopped coriander leaves; salt and cumin powder.
Method: Mix all ingredients, except puffed wheat. Chill till required. Toss in puffed wheat. Eat it immediately till its crunchy. Calories per serving: 91 Kcals.
Roopali Gupta is a diet and nutrition expert and has extensively studied food technology.
Opinions expressed by ThinkNaturalToday.com contributors are their own. None of the facts and figures mentioned in the story have been created by ThinkNaturalToday.com. ThinkNaturalToday.com is not responsible for any factual errors. This article was first published in Joyful Living magazine, sister publication of www.thinknaturaltoday.com