Sunday, 2 September 2012

RECIPE: Nutty Protein Balls

Sugar Free September is well underway and I have been asked what is a good afternoon pick-me-up snack for witching hour, between 3pm-7pm when we start itching for a big pig out of everything and anything that we lay our eyes on. Yes, I know it just as well as you do. Its there and we are what we think; STARVING!!!! Well, let me tell you that you are not starving and you are not alone, I have come up with this protein packed recipe to keep you going for the afternoon that is totally sugar free and full of goodness. As you have read here, I have a long list of refined sugar alternatives to get you through this challenge but if you are also using this month to shed a few pounds its a good idea to keep the alternatives that are high in natural sugars (honey, maple syrup, rapadura, fruits, etc) low or unavailable in the afternoons and substitute with stevia as it has zero calories and no effect of blood sugar. Also is a good idea to keep other Carbohydrates like rice, potatoes, breads, pasta etc to a minimum in the afternoon/night and keep all your meals high in protein. My biggest tip is to eat dinner early, and when I say early, I mean super early as our bodies don't want to be eating a big heavy meal late at night, we simple cant digest it and thats how the weight can pile on. Keep bigger meals to morning and lunch and lighter meals to after that. We eat dinner in our house with the baby, so anytime time between 5-5.30pm and no later. I know this is hard for most people with work but its a great way to avoid snacking and then later I will have a tea and a yogurt or a few nuts or a couple of pieces of refined-sugar-free chocolate (best treat EVER!!!) to celebrate the baby being in bed and the end of the day. 
Protein is one of the keys to weight loss; 80% food, lots of water and the rest exercise. A friend of mine, Faith has designed a 30 day exercise program for anyone with limited time and everything can be done in your own home. You might like to check it out and work it in with your Sugar free September challenge, to get the best results Click here.

So how are our Nutty Protein Balls good for you??
  • They are sugar-free!!!
  • Protein is very important for the body for the growth, maintenance and repair of all cells. It fills you up and keeps your fuller for longer and helps to burn fat along the way.  
  • I'm not usually into protein powders but this one I have found, 180 nutrition is more of a superfood blend as well as a protein powder. It is all natural and is a good mixture of chia seeds, almonds, coconut flour, linseeds (flaxseeds), etc so I approve.
  • Coconut oil is a saturated fat but its all good... The oil actually has fat burning properties! It would have to be one of the healthiest fats around. This is because, the saturated fats present in coconut are medium chain fatty acids which get broken down quickly in the liver and are utilized as body fuel instead of being stored up as “fat”. Most other oils, including hydrogenated vegetable oil, are have fats present as long chain fatty acids which are absorbed by the fatty tissues of the cells and contribute to weigh gain and obesity. So thats why coconut oil is shouted out as the low-calorie non-fattening oil. Add it into something every day!
  • Tahini is a ground sesame seed paste in a consistancy like peanut butter. Sesame seeds are rich in beneficial minerals, calcium and zinc.  Its a great spread to have in the fridge and you can get it out to dip apple pieces in, add it to salad dressings and on sandwiches. I love it!
  • Nuts are a great snack but dont over do it, a small hand full is more than enough to hit a craving in the head. 
    Ingredients
  • 1 cup unhulled Tahini
  • 1/2 cup LSA
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Bean Powder ( or vanilla essence)
  • Pinch Cinnamon 
  • 3/4 cup almonds for rolling (chopped)
Method
  1. In a medium sized mixing bowl place all ingredients except the rolling almonds and stir until all combined and smooth.
  2. Place bowl into the fridge or freezer until mixture is firm (about half an hour)
  3. Once mixture is firm, pull bowl out of the fridge and make teaspoon sized balls. Roll in the chopped almonds.
  4. Place balls back into the fridge to set. 


Keep refrigerated. ENJOY!

Makes 16

PACKED WITH PROTEIN AND TOTALLY SUGAR-FREE = DELISH!

ENJOY!
Cass xox




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