Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Snack Series: Cinnamon Apples and Peanut Butter

I've decided to start a short series on snacks since my busy schedule lately is prompting me to make familiar recipes that I've already shared with you, plus I have been a bit light on the inspiration lately. The good thing is that I usually find snacks inspiring. I like to be creative with them. My goal is to share with you my best snacks for the rest of March.

Snacks are very important to me. Almost as important as breakfast. If I don't eat every few hours I start to feel light-headed, dizzy, and cranky. Maybe it's blood sugar related, but I don't have diabetes or anything medical like that. I think I'm just a hungry person. Plus, I don't eat a lot at once, which makes my belly want snacks and small meals more often. On days when I'm extra active I might have up to three snacks between lunch and dinner (mind you, lunch is usually at noon, and dinner is at 7 or 8 in the evening). Other days I'll have a light snack between breakfast and lunch, and a heartier snack between lunch and dinner. I eat so late in the evening that I rarely snack after dinner.

Today's featured snack is cinnamon apples with a spoonful of peanut butter. Something about the feeling of biting into apples makes my teeth cringe. I'll do it if that's my only option, but I prefer to bake apples or cut them up into pieces so I can avoid eating them with my front teeth. I dolled up my apple slices by sprinkling cinnamon on top. It's a healthy snack version of apple cinnamon desserts. To complete my snack, I added a side of chunky peanut butter with golden flax seed in it (courtesy of Trader Joe's). It was delicious!

Apples are really good for you. There's some truth to the saying "an apple a day keeps the doctor away." The fiber content keeps things running smoothly and helps prevent reabsorption of bad cholesterol, and the antioxidants may help prevent cancer.

I had heard cinnamon is good for you as well, but I was surprised at all of the good things it's supposed to do for you. According to this article, traditional Chinese medicine uses cinnamon to aid in the digestion of dairy products, prevent flatulence, treat nausea and vomiting, and help people who "tend to feel hot in their upper body but have cold feet." Who knew?

And peanut butter, oh-- what can I say? It's like chocolate's cousin. I love it. I found this fascinating article about what it's packed with, but instead of listing all of the vitamins and minerals, I'll tell you that it contributes to brain health, circulation, and protection against heart disease, high cholesterol, and various cancers.

So, get ready for some tasty, healthy snacks this month, along with fun health facts with each post.

4 comments:

tpeterr said...

I've heard it's actually much healthier to eat more snacks / small meals a day and not fill up at the three traditional meals. The difficulty, as you imply here, is to find snacks that are both satisfying and healthy (i.e. completely avoid vending machine-type food). All that to say, I LOVE apples and peanut butter; it's probably my #2 favorite snack.

My favorite snack:
Sometimes in the autumn I make a big snack or light lunch of a juicy pear, a handful of walnuts, and squares of a good cheese (havarti is great).

Becky Smith Kuk said...

Oh, that sounds so good. I love all of those things you listed. It would also be good if you combined it all together on a panini made on really good bread.

Anonymous said...

I tasted youre snack and it was so tasty. I didn't know cinnamon and apple made an awsome combinatin!!!

Anonymous said...

I tasted it and was really tasty. I didn't know cinnamon and apple made an awsome combination!!!