Chronic illness can really drain your energy and leave you feeling extra fatigued, apart from life's daily stresses, strains and responsibilities. Also of importance is the role of diet and inflammation in the chronic disease process. In our fast paced convenient store lives we can easily forget that not everything has to come out of a package or be a pre-processed manufactured treat.
Life gets busy no doubt, but actually it's just as easy to get back to basics with minimal effort (and not make extra plastic waste :) Getting a healthy energising snack together in a few minutes is so easy to do, and has great health benefits without aded sugar, salt or preservative nasties. One of my favourite quick snacks, especially when I'm dehydrated, can be half an apple, a few apricots and some yummy nutritious nuts.
Here are the reasons I choose this easy snack combo regularly:
Apples Do you know why these are so good for you? Apples are a superfood! This delicious fruit contains a number of vitamins and nutritional benefits. It helps clean your system, boost your immunity and enhance glowing skin. Apples are full of antioxidants, rich in Vitamin C, potassium, polyphenols, and flavonoids. (Research shows polyphenols can help manage blood pressure levels, promotes healthy blood vessels, good circulation and reduce and help control your blood sugar levels. They also help reduce chronic inflammation. Phytonutrients like flavonoids have beneficial anti-inflammatory effects and can protect your cells from oxidative damage that can lead to disease.
Tip: To make the most of apples, do not peel off the skin.
The outer crimson skin is full of health benefits and it is here the secret lies behind this superfood. The skin of an apple alone gives you two to six times the antioxidant activity than the flesh of the fruit! Remember to choose organic apples to avoid harmful pesticides. Still not convinced on what makes apples a superfood? ;)
Dried Apricots Try some dried apricots as a quick snack everyday. Dried apricots have calcium, which strengthens your
bones and preserves nerve function. These are loaded with fibre & minerals, providing iron, potassium, phosphorus and selenium that plays a role in improving the body’s metabolism. They also include magnesium which helps provide relief from muscle spasms and cramps.
Walnuts have a wealth of the good kind of fats (polyunsaturated fats)and also have a high amount of omega-3 fatty acids. It helps in the prevention of inflammation, improvement in metabolism and diabetes control. Walnuts can also benefit brain health and act as a mood booster. Walnuts have always been considered as ‘brain food’ (perhaps because the surface of the walnut has a wrinkled appearance, like that of the brain!) In some cultures they are considered as a symbol of intelligence, and some believe that they actually increase one’s intellect!
Walnuts have so many benefits and you only need to consume 1-2 walnuts per day. There are great ways of adding walnuts to your diet, even into your smoothies. You can also chop them up and add them to your early morning cereal or just snack on them on the go!
Pistachios These colourful little gems are a great source of nutrition, and are brimming with vitamins and nutrients. Try and vary your routine and grab some pistachios as a tasty alternate nut snack. Pistachios are also a nice source of protein, especially for vegans and vegetarians (about 6 grams per ounce). About a handful a day are the right portion size. They have nutrients like vitamin B6, which promotes blood flow by helping to carry oxygen through the bloodstream to cells. Vitamin B6 also promotes immune and nervous system health.They have plant-based compounds that act as antioxidants, including vitamin E. Try adding them to your porridge or cereals or blend them into a smoothie, better yet eat a handful once a day if your energy is waning.
So good for you and so pretty too!
So get snacking on nature's delicious healthy treats to boost your health and strengthen your body to manage illness and give yourself the best chance. These are really good for you and better for our planet :)