Every well-balanced diet should include healthy snacks – and a fasting diet is no exception. At around 10Okcal each, a snack should be filling and nutritious. Dietitian Juliette Kellow chooses 21 that tick all the boxes
V2 SMALL AVOCADO (50g) Why? It’s rich in monounsaturated fat, which helps reduce LDL(bad) cholesterol and promote HDL(good) cholesterol. Plus it contains potassium, vitamins B6 and E and pantothenic acid.
Supercharge it (+ 15kcal) Make guacamole by adding 1 tomato, garlic, lemon juice and black pepper.
Nutrition note Scrape as much flesh as you can from the skin as many of the antioxidants lie just under it.
8 DRIED APRICOTS (64g) Why? You’ll get 16% of your daily needs for iron, 22% for fibre and 44% for potassium (when water is removed from fruit, the nutrients are concentrated).
Supercharge them (+ 85kcal) Add 1tbsp pumpkin seeds to boost the range of vitamins and minerals.
Nutrition note Around 5 to 1 3% of people with asthma have sulphite sensitivity, so asthma sufferers should choose dried apricots free from sulphur dioxide.
140g COOKED PRAWNS Why? Prawns provide phosphorus and copper and are rich in protein, omega-3 fats, selenium and vitamins B12 and E.
Supercharge them (+ 20kcal) Make a low-cal prawn cocktail by combining them with a handful of lettuce, 1 tomato and a squeeze of lemon juice.
Nutrition note This snack counts as one of the two recommended weekly portions offish and contains good amounts of heart-healthy omega-3 fats.
15 ALMONDS (15g) Why? They contain more calcium than other nuts, plus nutrients such as potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, zinc, manganese, vitamin B2 and biotin – and 30% of our daily vitamin E needs.
Supercharge them (+ 48kcal) Combine with 4 dried apricots to satisfy a sweet tooth.
Nutrition note When buying, choose nuts with their skins on – whole almonds contain around 40% more fibre than blanched ones
30 CHERRY TOMATOES (450g) Why? You’ll get a huge hit of vitamin C, potassium and filling fibre – and can eat loads for 10Okcal.
Supercharge them (+ 10kcal) Toss with a handful of rocket, baby spinach or watercress and 1tsp balsamic vinegar. The vitamin C helps the body absorb the iron from the leaves.
Nutrition note Provides less than a fifth of an adult’s recommended maximum amount of sugar for a day.
1tbsp SUNFLOWER SEEDS (15g) Why? Like nuts, they’re nutrient packed – especially high in potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, copper, manganese, selenium and vitamins B1 and E.
Supercharge them (+ 5kcal) Sprinkle over a bowl of dark green mixed leaves – the fat in the seeds will help the body absorb the carotenoids from the leaves.
Nutrition note Use a measuring spoon to ensure you get the right portion size.
90g CANNED TUNA IN WATER Why? It s a Iow-fat way to get hunger-busting protein into your diet and boost phosphorus and vitamins B3, B6, B12 and D. It’s also rich in selenium.
Supercharge it (+ 25kcal) Mix with 1tbsp fat-free natural yogurt for calcium and lemon juice for flavour, then spoon into cos lettuce leaves.
Nutrition note Many people in the UK have very low intakes of selenium, essential for healthy immunity. This snack provides 100% of your daily need.
1 SLICE WHOLEGRAIN BREAD WITH 1tsp PEANUT BUTTER
Why? This snack is a rich source of starchy carbs and fibre and releases its energy slowly to provide sustainable energy.
Supercharge it (+ 10kcal) Top with a 5cm chunk cucumber, sliced. The crunch will make it more satisfying.
Nutrition note To keep calories down, choose a medium (rather than thick) sliced loaf and no added sugar or salt peanut butter.
250g BLUEBERRIES Why? They re rich in anthocyanins, antioxidants that lab research has linked with numerous health benefits, including better memory, heart health, eyesight and blood sugar control.
Supercharge them (+ 43kcal) Top with 2tbsp fat-free natural yogurt for a protein and calcium boost.
Nutrition note The 23g sugar in this snack is still only a quarter of the maximum you should have in a day.
20g PLAIN CHOCOLATE Why? It’s rich in antioxidants and provides magnesium, phosphorus, iron, copper, manganese and potassium.
Supercharge it (+ 16kcal) Melt and serve with 4 strawberries for dipping, for a vitamin C boost.
Nutrition note Choose chocolate with a minimum of 70% cocoa solids. Dark chocolate has a little more fat but usually much less sugarthan milk chocolate.
1 LARGE BOILED EGG
Why? Eggs are high in protein, selenium, iodine, vitamins B2 and B12, and biotin, plus they contain vitamin A and folate and are packed with vitamin D.
Supercharge it (+ 10kcal) Turn it into a salad with mixed leaves, cucumber and cress, to add fibre and vitamin C.
Nutrition note One egg contains 10% of our daily iron needs – but avoid eating it with a cup of tea, as the tannins in tea hinder iron absorption.
10 WHOLE CASHEW NUTS (15g)
Why? Like all nuts, cashews provide a wide range of nutrients, but they contain more iron and copper than most others. This serving provides 30% of our daily need for copper.
Supercharge them (+ 40kcal) Mix with 1 level tbsp (15g) raisins for an extra nutrient boost.
Nutrition note Choose unsalted varieties of cashews to keep your salt intake low – regular high intakes of salt are linked to raised blood pressure.
3V2 SLICES CANTALOUPE MELON (530g)
Why? It’s rich in beta-carotene, which the body uses to make vitamin A.
Supercharge them (+ Okcal) Sprinkle with cinnamon, which has been shown to help slow down the rise in blood sugar that occurs after eating.
Nutrition note This is a big portion – but studies show the actual quantity of food we eat is important for helping to fill us up!
5 BRAZIL NUTS (15g)
Why? They’re nutrient powerhouses: three-quarters of their fat is heart-healthy unsaturates, plus they’re rich in selenium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, zinc, manganese, vitamins B1 and E and contain calcium, iron, vitamin B6 and biotin.
Supercharge them (+ 25kcal) Add a satsuma for vitamin C.
Nutrition note Brazil nuts vary in size – if you want to be sure of sticking to 10Okcal, weigh out 15g.
SMALL MATCHBOX-SIZE PIECE REDUCED- FAT CHEDDAR (30g)
Why? It’s packed with protein to keep us fuller for longer, and it’s rich in calcium, phosphorus and vitamins A, B1 and B12.
Supercharge it (+ 2kcal) Enjoy it with a celery stick to add fibre and boost the hunger-busting effects of this snack.
Nutrition note Cheddar contains a lot of salt, so keep an eye on the salt content of other meals and snacks.
1 LARGE BANANA (120g)
Why? Full of starchy carbs, bananas will fill you up and top up potassium. They also contain vitamin B6, which ensures the immune and nervous systems work properly and is needed to make red blood cells.
Supercharge it (+ 80kcal) Use it to top 1 slice granary bread for a wholegrain energy boost.
Nutrition note As they ripen, some of the starches are turned into sugars, so stick with firm bananas to keep the natural sugar content down.
Why? They re full of fibre and vitamin C, and a surprising source of folate. This amount provides 66% of our daily need for this B vitamin.
Supercharge them (+ 43kcal) Puree and mix with 2tbsp fat-free natural yogurt for calcium and protein, then freeze as a lolly.
Nutrition note If it’s quantity you’re after, this is one of the biggest snacks you can get for your 10Okcal!
150g PLAIN REDUCED-FAT COTTAGE CHEESE
Why? It’s the low-fat way to enjoy dairy and boost protein, while still getting all the benefits of calcium, phosphorus and other vitamins and minerals.
Supercharge it (+ 10kcal) Add 1/2 finely chopped onion (rich in flavonoids – antioxidants that have been linked with protecting against heart disease and stroke).
Nutrition note Choose a low-fat variety – one with no more than 3g fat in 100g.
1 WEETABIX WITH 100ml SKIMMED MILK
Why? This cereal contains wholegrain, good intakes of which are linked to better heart health and weight maintenance. Plus Weetabix is fortified with B vitamins and iron, and milk adds lots of nutrients.
Supercharge it (+ 16kcal) Add 4 sliced strawberries – their vitamin C will help the body absorb the iron from the cereal.
Nutrition note This has less than 1 % of the maximum amount of sugar or salt we should have in a day.
125g POT FAT-FREE FRUIT YOGURT
Why? Yogurt is loaded with protein and contains bone-building calcium and phosphorus. Plus it’s rich in iodine, which helps to keep our thyroid functioning properly, and contains energy-producing vitamin B2.
Supercharge it (+ 24kcal) Sprinkle with 1tsp chia seeds for a nutrient boost of fibre, vitamins and minerals.
Nutrition note Yes, fruit yogurts usually contain added sugar, but you get a lot of nutrients, too.
100 -200 calories
Twice-baked z cheese souffles
PREP 45 MIN + COOLING + CHILLING COOK 35 MIN SERVES 6
- Up to 24 hr before you want to serve the souffles, lightly brush 6 x 150ml ramekins with olive oil and coat with the polenta, shaking out any excess. Put the ramekins in a small roasting tin.
- Melt the butter with the 11/2tbsp oil in a medium pan, then stir in the flour and cook, stirring, for 1 min. Remove the pan from the heat and add the milk, little by little, stirring well until smooth. Return the pan to the heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and comes to the boil. Remove the pan from the heat. Reserving 1 heaped tbsp of the parmesan, stir the rest into the mixture with the mustard. Add the soft cheese in small spoonfuls and stir to combine. Add the chives, season with freshly ground black pepper, then leave to cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, make the salsa. In a small bowl, combine the tomatoes, onion, tomato puree and crushed chillies. Season with ground black pepper, then cover and chill until ready to serve.
- Heat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6. Beat the 2 egg yolks into the cooled cheese mixture. In a clean mixing bowl, whisk the 3 egg whites to stiff peaks. Use a large metal spoon to fold 1tbsp of the whisked egg whites into the cheese mixture to loosen slightly. Gently and evenly fold the remaining egg whites, half at a time, into the cheese mixture, keeping the mixture light and airy. Divide it evenly among the prepared ramekins.
- Pour enough cold water into the roasting tin to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins, then bake for 15-18 min until golden and risen. Remove the souffles from the tin and set aside to cool – they will sink. Once completely cold, cover the ramekins and put in the fridge to chill.
- To reheat the souffles, remove them from the fridge about 10 min before baking. Heat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6. Turn each souffle out of its ramekin and put it, right-side up, on a baking sheet lined with baking paper. Sprinkle overthe reserved parmesan, then bake for 10 min or until risen. Serve with the salsa, extra snipped chives and the rocket.