Snack happy

To help you jazz up your lunchbox, we’ve put together some healthy snack ideas for work – to keep you away from the sweet stuff. If you hit the office biscuits at elevenses, and again mid-afternoon, we’ve also rounded up the healthiest snacks for runners, based on the time of day.

1. Red peppers

Did you know, a one per cent fluid loss can affect your ability to think clearly? Red peppers are high in water. Dip them in guacamole for a healthy work snack.

2. Rice cakes

It’s a good idea to only bring in a single portion, to stop you devouring the entire pack. Smear with spreadable cheese for a healthy and satisfying mid-afternoon snack.

3. Berries

Studies have found that people who eat berries in the morning eat less at dinnertime.

4. Nuts

Don’t go overboard here, but add nuts to your mid-morning snack time as they’re packed with good fats, which will help you feel fuller for longer.

5. Eggs

As scrambling eggs in the work microwave is a little, well, antisocial, why not hard boil some at home in the morning before you head to the office?

6. Peanut butter and banana

Whether you choose to eat it on a Ryvita, a rice cake, or just on its own, peanut butter and banana is a power combo if you’re running home. It’ll give you the energy you need, without weighing you down.

7. Hummus and carrots

Hummus gives you a steady supply of energy, rather than a blood-sugar spike followed by a crash. It’s also great with carrots.

8. Energy balls

There are plenty of recipes for healthy energy balls online. Make a big batch and only bring in one portion a day to avoid munching them all after lunch.

9. Air-popped popcorn

If you can, make it yourself using popcorn kernels and a pan on the hob.

10. Overnight oats

If you’ve run to work and need a substantial snack to keep you going until lunch, stir almonds and banana into your overnight oats for protein and fibre.

11. Yoghurt

Adding chia seeds to your yoghurt can cut hunger and sugar cravings.

12. Roasted chickpeas

Roasted chickpeas make a great protein-packed snack. To make your own, roast chickpeas with olive oil and salt in an oven, stirring now and again, for about 30 minutes or until they are crispy. You can add paprika or red chilli flakes for extra flavour.

13. Smoothies

A smoothie is the perfect morning snack to kick-start your day and it can also be one of the best ways to refuel after a run. Power up your smoothies by ensuring they contain protein, healthy fats and vegetables.

The protein will aid muscle repair and recovery – and fill you up. When it comes to protein powder, the more natural, the better, so look for one with a short list of ingredients. Rice, pea and hemp protein are all good options.

Healthy fats provide energy and support cell growth. Add one or two portions of fats, such as half an avocado, a tablespoon of flax seeds or a small handful of unroasted nuts.

Adding veggies to your smoothie is a great way to add fibre and keep you full for longer. Courgettes have a neutral taste, or opt for nutrient-rich leaves like kale or spinach for a health boost. Spinach contains nitrates, which help deliver oxygen to the muscles.

14. Baked sweet potato

Add tahini to a small baked sweet potato, cut into wedges, for a protein-packed, fibre-rich snack.

Runner's World