The health crisis caused by COVID-19 has changed the lives of all of us. Staying at home can be boring and can have negative effects, both for the general population and for athletes. In such a situation, resorting to food out of boredom is a temptation that is difficult to resist. In this article, we will give you some healthy snack ideas for eating between meals without gaining weight.
Eating between meals: yes or no?
Eating between meals is a very popular trend, especially among college students. In the case of athletes, eating snacks between meals usually corresponds with taking supplements and pre-workout protein bars. In these cases, getting a good load of carbohydrates can improve sports performance.
There are several training-related strategies that can be used at certain times of the season. For example, snack foods are used to improve the performance of a weightlifting athlete. Another widely used strategy for improving performance and body composition is to train on an empty stomach.
What is clear is that this strategy must be justified and must be performed while exercising. The important thing is not to use it on the day of the competition, because if the effect is not what you want, it can cause problems.
Healthy snacks for sports enthusiasts
Let’s now list some healthy snack ideas for sports enthusiasts. To make the most of their benefits, we recommend that you consult a nutritionist, who will help you incorporate them into a healthy and balanced diet.
- Pickles, but beware of the salt!
- Microwave potatoes or sweet potatoes.
- Natural or roasted walnuts.
- Pickled mussels.
- Bread with tomato and oil.
- Peanuts without peel.
- Shrimp and vegetable skewers.
- Fruit: It is helpful to keep a bowl full of cut fruit in the fridge.
- Raw carrots.
- Vegetable, potato and sweet potato chips: cut the vegetables very thin and dehydrate them in the microwave or oven.
- Humus with crudité.
- Cherry tomatoes.
Other more elaborate healthy snack ideas
According to an FAO report, the demand for corn is growing strongly. This cereal contains potassium, phosphorus, magnesium and all vitamins except B12. It is a gluten-free food, so it is common to find it in recipes for celiacs.
Popcorn is a healthy and very versatile snack, which is why it is included on our list of healthy snacks for those who play sports. To prepare them, you need corn seeds, virgin olive oil and a microwave-safe bowl with a steamer lid; the bowl can be ceramic or silicone.
There are three steps to follow:
- Put the corn kernels in a bowl with a drizzle of virgin olive oil, salt or spices to taste. Any spice can be used, from paprika to curry.
- Second, put in the microwave for two and a half minutes. The time depends on the power of the microwave.
- Finally, add toppings, such as dark chocolate for those who prefer sweet popcorn.
This recipe is quick and only requires three ingredients: a banana, olive oil, and spices to taste. The procedure to prepare it involves the following steps:
- First, you need to cook a banana for a few minutes.
- Then add a tablespoon of virgin olive oil, season to taste and grind.
- Then, crush the dough between two layers of parchment paper, bake for a few minutes, cut into triangles and bake again until toasted.
Once ready, your banana nachos can be served with homemade guacamole or tomato salsa. Only two ingredients will be needed to prepare the first sauce: avocado and lemon. Just mash and mix both ingredients. You can play with the quantities to get one flavor or another.
And to drink?
Taking into account that alcoholic beverages with gas shouldn’t be an option for sports people, here are our alternatives to accompany healthy snacks for sports people:
- Herbal tea with ice and a slice of lemon.
- Sparkling or still water with ice and a few pieces of fruit to give it flavor.
- Tomato juice.
- Alcohol-free beer.
So what are you waiting for, enjoy these snacks without sacrificing your healthy habits. Whether it’s because you always prefer healthy foods or because you don’t want to gain weight during quarantine, our snack ideas are sure to come in handy. Try them and choose your favorites!