By Cathe Olson
My rule for pregnant women is that each meal or snack have protein, fat, and complex carbs. This should help your blood sugar to stay constant, slow down the digestion of the foods, and give you energy.
Here’s a list of snack ideas I have compiled:
-Whole grain toast with tahini or cream cheese and banana slices
-Toasted English muffins with cottage cheese and fresh fruit slices
-Whole grain bagel with almond butter, mashed avocado, or cream cheese
-Crackers with nut/seed butter or cheese
-Hard-boiled egg with crackers or bread
-Cottage cheese (dairy or nondairy) with fresh fruit or vegetables
-Cottage cheese (dairy or nondairy) and applesauce
-Fresh fruit or raw vegetables and cheese
-Fresh fruit and nuts or seeds
-Raw vegetables with nut/seed butter or cream cheese
-Hummus with raw vegetables, pita triangles, or crackers
-Easy Bean Dip with raw vegetables, pita triangles, or crackers
-Creamy Watercress Dip with raw vegetables, pita triangles, or crackers
-Yogurt with Millet Crunch Granola
-Cold or hot cereal with fruit and nuts/seeds
-Leftovers from breakfast or dinner
-Leftover soup or stew
-Apple or pear slices with nut or seed butter for dipping
-Oranges or strawberries with yogurt for dipping
-Fruit salad topped with yogurt, cottage cheese, nuts, or seeds
-Bread chunks dipped in olive or flaxseed oil
Here are a couple of energy bar things you can make ahead:
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup dried figs
1/2 cup peanut butter, almond butter, or tahini
Place sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, raisins, and figs in food processor with metal blade. Chop until everything is ground together. Add nut or seed butter and mix until combined. Roll mixture into balls or press into 8-inch round cake pan and cut into 1-inch squares. Keep refrigerated.
Makes about 3 dozen
Note: Nuts can be substituted for seeds and other dried fruit can be substituted for raisins and figs.
Coconut Energy Bars: Add 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut to mixture. Add a little coconut milk if necessary to help balls hold together.
These are great energy boosters. Keep a batch in your refrigerator and take a few along when you go out.
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup walnuts
1 cup raisins
4 dried figs or dates, pits removed
1/4 cup carob powder
2 teaspoons blackstrap molasses
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger or 1/8 teaspoon powdered
Pinch sea salt
About 2 tablespoons water
Carob powder or unsweetened shredded coconut for rolling
Place almonds and walnuts in food processor with metal blade and pulse to chop. Add raisins, figs or dates, molasses, vanilla, cardamom, ginger, and sea salt. Process until everything is uniformly chopped. Add water a little at a time until mixture holds together. Roll into 1-inch balls. Roll balls in shredded coconut or carob powder if desired. Keep balls refrigerated if you are plan to keep them around more than a day or two.
Makes about 2 dozen
Note: Other nuts or seeds can be substituted for the almonds and walnuts.
Here are a couple of high-protein smoothies:
This smoothie is a powerhouse of protein, vitamins, and minerals.
2 tablespoons raw almonds or cashews
1 tablespoon raw sunflower or pumpkin seeds
1 cup milk (dairy or nondairy) or kefir
1/4 cup juice (apple, pineapple, etc.)
1 banana, fresh or frozen
1 cup fresh or frozen berries (strawberries, blueberries, etc.)
1 tablespoon wheat germ
2 teaspoons nutritional yeast flakes
1 teaspoon flaxseed oil or 1 tablespoon chia gel (page xxx)
1/4 teaspoon spirulina powder (optional)
Place nuts and seeds in blender and grind to powder. Add remaining ingredients and puree until smooth.
Makes 2 servings
APPROXIMATE NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION FOR 1 SERVING: Calories: 293 cal; Protein: 11 g; Carbohydrates: 34 g; Fat: 15 g; Fiber: 7 g; Sodium: 66 mg.
KEY NUTRIENTS: Thiamine: 2.4 mg; Riboflavin: 2.53 mg; Niacin: 13.72 mg; Pantothenic Acid: 1.13 mg; Vitamin B6: 2.6 mg; Folate: 106.62 mcg; Vitamin B12: 2.19 mcg; Vitamin C: 50.36 mg; Vitamin E: 6.48 mg; Calcium: 186.64 mg; Iron: 1.64 mg; Magnesium: 90.98 mg; Zinc: 1.88 mg.
This nutritious smoothie makes an excellent meal or snack. I especially appreciated it my first trimester because the ginger helped with the nausea.
1/4 cup almonds or 2 tablespoons almond butter
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup yogurt (dairy or nondairy)
1 cup frozen diced peaches
1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
Liquid stevia extract, maple syrup, brown rice syrup, agave nectar, or honey to taste (optional)
Place almonds in blender and grind to powder. Add remaining ingredients and puree until smooth.
Makes 1 serving