In my work as a nutritionist, I often talk to people who want to increase their energy levels or lose weight sustainably.
One of the most important secrets I share with them is to actually ADD foods to their diet. I say this for two reasons:
1. If you want to drop weight, you need to eat regularly to avoid the all too common "blood sugar roller coaster ride" and the cravings that go with it.
2. Focusing on dos rather than dont's is encouraging and helps maintain momentum you'll need for lasting results.
Of course the trick is to choose the right foods, and a great place to start is with simple snacks, like these tasty vegan treats.
Cashew Cream Apples
First, you'll need:
- 4 red apples
- 4 popsicle sticks (or forks)
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 1 cup cashews
- 6 Tbsp almond milk
- 2 Tbsp grated, dark chocolate (70% cocoa)
- 2 Tbsp oatmeal
- 1 tsp coconut sugar
- 1 tsp chia seeds
Blend the coconut oil with the nuts and almond milk until very smooth. (For this step, a high speed blender works best.)
Spear the apples on wooden sticks and coat them with the nut butter using a spoon.
Mix the chocolate flakes, oatmeal, chia seeds and coconut sugar in a soup plate and roll the coated apples around until they are covered evenly.
Eat immediately or store in the refrigerator.
This snack is incredibly tasty and the fiber in the apples and cashews combined with a special compound in the oatmeal called β-glucan effectively help you fight hunger, reduce appetite and keep your energy levels up.
Chia seeds have a similar effect (plus many more!), coconut oil is a super healthy fat which actually promotes weight loss, and the cocoa in dark chocolate protects from inflammation & oxidative damage and has beneficial effects on satiety, cognitive function, and mood.
Following an actual diet can help reduce weight but chances are high that your high spirits and energy levels will suffer, or that you yo-yo right back to square one once you're done with the meal plans.
Start by adding simple and real food to your daily diet and slowly adapt your lifestyle at multiple levels.
If you keep looking for the do's, your health will improve naturally and effortlessly!