A Nutritional Therapist’s Guide to Snacking

A Nutritional Therapist’s Guide to Snacking

Snacking is more than just a way to satisfy hunger between meals; it's an opportunity to fuel our bodies with nutrients that support energy levels, focus, and overall health. But, we can sometimes find ourselves reaching for the snacks just out of boredom or habit.

If you find yourself mindlessly munching or grabbing a quick fix whilst you’re on the go, then stay tuned, as Registered Nutritional Therapist, Marilia Chamon explores the benefits of snacking and listening to your body’s hunger cues and shares her top healthy snack recipes that will keep you energised and fuelled and stop you reaching for the processed snacks.  

Does Snacking Benefit Our Health?

The question of whether snacking is beneficial or detrimental to health is not so straightforward. It depends on individual dietary needs, lifestyle, and the quality of snacks consumed. Snacking can be an excellent way to manage hunger, provide energy between meals, and ensure a steady intake of nutrients throughout the day. However, indiscriminate snacking, especially on sugary, low-nutrient foods, can contribute to health issues.

To Snack or Not To Snack? 

Whether or not you should snack depends on personal health goals, daily activity levels, and overall dietary patterns. For some, especially those with higher energy needs or those who prefer smaller, more frequent meals, snacking can be a valuable part of a balanced diet. For others, focusing on three well-balanced meals may be more appropriate.

Snacking can be a positive addition to your diet when done thoughtfully and with a focus on nutrition. It's about making informed choices that align with your health goals and listening to your body's needs. Here’s a guide on how to make snacking a healthy and enjoyable part of your daily routine. 

Prioritise Whole Foods Over Processed Snacks 

Focus on snacks that are as close to their natural state as possible. Whole foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and whole grains are packed with essential nutrients and fibre that help keep you satisfied and energised. For instance, pairing an apple with a handful of almonds provides a good mix of carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats, which can help stabilise blood sugar levels and prevent energy dips.

Listen to Your Body's Hunger Cues 

Snacking should be responsive to your body's needs rather than a habit or response to boredom or stress. Learn to recognise hunger cues and choose snacks that will satisfy those needs. This mindfulness approach ensures that your snacks contribute positively to your overall nutrient intake for the day.

Plan Your Snacks 

Just as you might plan your main meals, think ahead about your snacks. Keeping healthy options readily available can help you avoid reaching for less nutritious, convenience foods when hunger strikes. Preparing snacks like veggie sticks with hummus, Greek yoghurt with berries, or a portion of mixed nuts can make it easier to make healthier choices.

Balance Macronutrients 

For a snack to be truly satisfying and energising, it should contain a balance of macronutrients: carbohydrates, protein, and fats. This combination helps to provide a sustained energy release.

Incorporate Protein-Rich Snacks 

Including a source of protein in your snacks can contribute to feelings of fullness. Options like a hard-boiled egg, greek yoghurt, cottage cheese can be easy, protein-packed choices.

Embrace Variety 

Variety is not only the spice of life but also a key to nutritional balance. Rotating your snack choices can ensure you're getting a wide range of nutrients. Try different fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and whole grains to keep things interesting and nutritious.

Nutritious, well-balanced, and filling snack ideas:


  • Greek Yoghurt with Mixed Berries and Chia Seeds: Combine a serving of plain Greek yoghurt with a half cup of mixed berries (like blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries). Sprinkle with a tablespoon of chia seeds for added fibre and omega-3 fatty acids. This snack is rich in protein, antioxidants, and healthy fats.

  • Apple Slices with Almond Butter: Slice a medium apple and serve with a tablespoon of almond butter for dipping. The apple provides fibre and vitamins, while the almond butter offers healthy fats and protein. This combination is satisfying and can help keep blood sugar levels stable.

  • Veggie Sticks with Hummus: Slice carrots, bell peppers, and cucumbers into sticks and serve with hummus. This snack is not only crunchy and satisfying but also provides a good mix of carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats, along with essential vitamins and minerals.

  • Oatcakes with Cottage Cheese and Tomato: Top oatcakes with a layer of cottage cheese and sliced tomato. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper to taste. Cottage cheese is a great source of protein, while whole-grain crackers add fibre, and tomatoes provide vitamins and hydration.

  • Roasted Chickpeas: Toss a cup of chickpeas with a teaspoon of olive oil, sprinkle with your favourite spices (like cumin, paprika, and garlic powder), and roast in the oven until crispy. Chickpeas are a great source of protein and fibre, making this a filling and nutritious snack.


Smart snacking can be a great way to nourish your body and sustain your energy throughout the day. By focusing on whole foods, listening to your body, planning ahead, and ensuring a good balance of macronutrients and fibre, you can turn snacking into a healthy and enjoyable part of your dietary routine. The aim is to enrich your diet with nutrient-dense choices that support your overall health and wellness goals.

Marilia Chamon
Written by Marilia Chamon
Registered Nutritional Therapist, Gut Health, IBS & SIBO Expert
Founder of Gutfulness Nutrition
   **At Free Soul, your well-being is our priority, and although we pride ourselves on our expertise in women's health and wellbeing, it is important to acknowledge the individuality of each person. Features published by Free Soul are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease, or replace the advice of your GP. We always recommend consulting with a healthcare provider if you encounter any health concerns, and we’ll always be here to support you so you’re never alone on your journey.