Dark Chocolate and Other Delicious Snacks for Expecting Mums

Enough with the spinach salads. There are tasty foods out there that are healthy during pregnancy and you should have it. Did you know dark chocolate and popcorn are actually healthy for you? Read on for the most mouth-watering snacks and desserts.

Dark chocolate

Dark chocolate helps relax your muscles, it’s a delicious source of serotonin, it will put you in a better mood and it can help prevent preeclampsia. Above all, it’s probably the tastiest healthy snack you’ll keep around.

Fruit parfait with cereal

Mix low-fat yoghurt, cereal and pumpkin puree or mango, top with maple syrup and cashews and you’ve got yourself a nice treat. Pumpkin is a good source of Vitamin E, Iron and Folate. Mango is a good alternative: it’s rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C.

Dried cranberries and cashews

Have you tried it? It’s one of the best trail mix recipes ever invented. Cranberries enhance the taste of cashew nuts and they work great with walnuts as well.

Raisins

They’re sweet, they’re easy to store and carry along, great for trail mixes and at hand for whenever you feel like nibbling a snack. They’re also healthy. Raisins are a source of fibre, iron and potassium.

Popcorn

Whole grains are an important source of fibre and popcorn is one of them. It contains a lot of nutrients that are healthy for you. Try to eat it freshly popped and don’t put too much salt.

Home-made nachos

If you’re craving for salted chips, make your own nachos with salsa sauce and cheese. It’s a tasty snack and it’s much healthier than supermarket chips or restaurant nachos.

Roasted almonds

Almonds are more nutritious in raw form, but their delicious flavour really comes out when roasted. Eat them with raisins or cranberries or mix them in a banana smoothie. The combination of bananas and roasted almonds is a unique experience for the senses.

Baby carrots

They’re sweet and healthy, and they’ll satisfy your need to nibble on candy. Dip them in low-fat sour cream, it’s the healthy alternative for chips and dip.

5 Ways to Control Your Food Cravings during Pregnancy

Many pregnant women crave for junk food, specific snacks (pickles, anyone?) and peculiar food combinations. If you lust after cucumbers and apples, you’re one of the lucky ones. Longing for junk food like chocolate and burgers is however more common than craving healthy food. This is list is not about abstaining from your cravings. It’s about keeping your pregnancy diet under control, so that you and your baby receive all the necessary nutrients for a healthy development of the pregnancy. Here are the easiest ways in which you can do so.

1. Stock up on healthy snacks

Have healthy snacks with you all the time, in sufficient supply. When you get hungry, you’ll have something healthy to eat at hand. Think fruits, granola bars and nuts.

2. Eat right before shopping for groceries

Don’t go to the grocery store when you’re hungry. Your craving might take power over your shopping list and you’ll end up with too much ice-cream, chocolate, chips and other unhealthy foods. Avoiding to buy junk food in the first place makes it easier to not eat it.

3. Eat small portions of everything

Abstaining from eating any junk food that you are craving for is too much of an effort. It can lead to stress and make you tired. It’s absurd. You can have a scoop of ice-cream if you feel like it and you will be fine. The secret is moderation. Don’t buy junk food in large quantities and prepare very small servings of the food that’s not healthy for you. Once you’ve had a taste, it’s easier to manage your cravings. Eating healthy food in advance makes it even easier.

4. Find substitutes for your cravings

Challenge yourself to find the healthiest possible substitutes that are close enough to the foods that you’re craving to satisfy your appetite. You can choose to buy sweets that have less sugar and fat for instance. Try baked chips instead of fried chips, nuts over crisps, fruit juice instead of soda, frozen yoghurt over ice cream and whole-grain cereal over chocolate cereal.

5. Experiment with your cravings

Sometimes you think you’re craving for a particular food, but that’s not necessarily true. You might just be craving for something that has a particular taste, thus you can find more foods that can satisfy one craving. Try different combinations of foods that get close to the taste you’re craving for and experiment until you find healthier options.

10 Healthy Pregnancy Snacks That Are Actually Quick and Tasty

Ideally, you should eat small meals and plenty of snacks throughout the day during pregnancy. Eating snacks that are healthy for you is important, but not always at hand. If you’re running out of ideas, here is a list of 10 quick snacks recommended for moms to be.

Oranges

  • They contain Vitamin C and folate, so they are especially healthy during the first trimester.
  • Eat them as fruits or juiced early in the morning.

 

Fortified cereals and milk

  • Cereals are rich in fibre and are usually fortified with vitamins and minerals.
  • For those who don’t like drinking plain milk, adding cereals can be the perfect fix.
  • Add berries for extra Vitamin C and yumminess.

 

Baby carrots

  • Easy to carry around, baby carrots are rich in Vitamin A and are the perfect on-the-go snack.
  • Keep them close during your second trimester: the beta-Carotene is important for the development of your baby’s visual system.

 

Leafy greens and nuts salads

  • Fix yourself a healthy snack with spinach (or other dark green leaves), Brazil nuts, fresh cherry tomatoes and some lemon juice.
  • Leafy greens and tomatoes are rich in iron and contain essential vitamins, while Brazil nuts contain calcium and are probably the tastiest source of magnesium.
  • Eat them raw and make sure the spinach is fresh.

 

Granola bars

  • Buy granola bars with nuts or prepare them yourself (non-bake recipes are ideal)
  • Opt for the ones with honey and almond butter (rich in Magnesium), they’re delicious and healthy.
  • The perfect time for a granola bar snack is at brunch.

 

Smoothies

  • Start your morning with a fresh smoothie out of your favourite fruits for yet another awesome day of pregnancy.
  • Mix in raw or roasted almonds for Magnesium intake and a nutty flavour (roasted almonds taste better and preserve their nutritional values pretty well).
  • Check out these healthy smoothie recipes.

 

Dried fruits and nuts mix

  • Create your own trail mix of raw nuts and your favourite dried fruits.
  • The healthy picks for the trail mix are: almonds, walnuts, Brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries and apricots.

 

Fresh fruit salad

  • Mix apples, pears, bananas, kiwi and other favourite fruits with low-fat yoghurt.
  • The benefits you’ll get are vitamins, calcium, water and energy throughout the day.
  • It is recommended to eat fruits especially in the first half of the day, after at least half an hour from the previous meal.

 

Avocado dip

  • Mush one avocado together with a small yoghurt, lemon juice, tahini paste, one scallion and a pinch of salt.
  • Avocados contain more folic acid than any other fruits, and tahini is a powerful combo of iron, calcium and magnesium.
  • Serve it with red bell peppers and eat it within a few hours at most, before the avocado will oxidise.

 

Low-fat cottage cheese

  • Cottage cheese is rich in proteins and it’s a delicious source of calcium.
  • Spread it on whole wheat bread or crackers.