REGAINING YOUR ENERGY – SNACKS! by nutritionist Fern Callister

Making sure you have some protein with your meals to help slow down the blood sugar release from highly processed, sugary or caffeinated food and drink is one way of helping to reduce energy dips. In this piece I will focus on the main time in the day that is a prime trap for cravings and naughty habits – the ‘3 o’clock slump’!

I can safely say we have all been there, that time when the vending machine lights seem to glow extra brightly, or the people in the office tend to migrate towards the tea point for a cuppa and a chat, or perhaps you are at home and find yourself looking in the fridge or the cupboard for a mid afternoon treat.

I have even caught myself having a micro-sleep at my desk on occasion! This it a great time for you to very quickly see a huge difference just by being prepared and having the right snacks with you. If you have something healthy with you which stops you grabbing the sugar and caffeine, that is half the battle won already. Here are some helpful tips for great snacks when you are out and about, at work or at home:

– Fruit* and a handful of mixed seeds or nuts (* The best types of fruit: 1 pear, 1 apple, 10-15 red grapes, 3 plums, 2-3kiwis, 1 nectarine or peach, cherries, berries. By having the seeds with the fruit, the fruit sugar is released slower. The seeds are also excellent nourishment for your brain through that 3pm dip!)

– Small pot of hummus with 2 oatcakes or vegetable crudites

– 2 oatcakes with nut butter (cashew nut butter is great)

– Protein powder smoothie with diluted fruit juice or blended fresh fruit. Natural yoghurt or silken tofu adds a little creaminess.

– 5 or 6 brazil nuts (for a special treat, dark chocolate coated ones)

– A slice of Spanish omelette

– Cucumber or carrot sticks with tzatziki or guacamole dip

– Half an avocado with an oatcake (balsamic vinegar gives it an edge)

– Wallaby bars/ Nakd bars / Lara bars (available in most supermarkets and health food shops)

– A boiled egg! (organic and free range, of course)

Did you notice the link here? They all have a form of protein in them which is great for your skin, brain, digestive system and your energy levels to name but a few. Eating these kinds of snacks can also help you lose weight.

Try these mid- morning too to avoid any 11am energy dips. Carrying these around with you is also no longer a problem. We can forget the fights with the cling film or kitchen foil and use one of the many sizes of clippable boxes available from most supermarkets. I found some brilliant tiny ones in Rymans stationers designed for paperclips but excellent for nuts, seeds and even vitamins!

For nutritional consultations please contact me at,, or 07961 169061.
I practice mainly in Southfields, Fulham and Wandsworth.

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