Energizing Homemade Trail Mix

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Heading outdoors for a mountain hike, kayaking through river rapids, hang gliding over picturesque valleys, no matter what your adventure this summer, keep energy levels high with nutritious and delicious snacks. Eating the wrong types of snacks can put a damper on your metabolism, leaving you feeling lethargic, depleting muscle strength and sabotaging weight loss efforts. Conversely, there is great power packed in the right kinds of snacks, such as energizing power for mental alertness, heightened caloric burn and nutrients to help you achieve a leaner, stronger body.

When participating in intense exercise, the body depletes muscles of glycogen, which needs to be replaced immediately afterward or the body’s proteins and tissue will steal from existing muscle tissue, having a reverse impact on your positive health goals. Best snack choices should include both protein and healthy carbs from foods such as lean turkey, chicken, whole grains, nuts and seeds. But, when you are out on the trail or rock climbing, turkey may not be a viable option. This easy-to-make at-home trail mix gives a nutritious, balanced mix of muscle-rebuilding protein, energizing carbs, healthy fats and body cleansing fiber.

You’ve got your to-go meal. Ready to climb that mountain?

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Energy-Boosting Trail Mix (Makes 4½ cups)

  • 3 cups toasted chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
  • ¼ cup golden raisins
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup toasted cashews
  • ¼ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa nibs

Directions: In a large mixing bowl, toss all ingredients together. Place in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. Tasty Tip: Toasted chickpeas (also referred to as garbanzo beans or chicknuts) are available in health food stores and grocery stores that carry whole and organic foods.

Nutritional Information Per Serving
Serving size: 44 g (or about ¼ cup)
Calories: 128.3
Fat: 4.0 g
Saturated Fat: 1.1 g
Carbohydrates: 20.2 g
Protein: 4.1 g
Fiber: 3.5 g
Sodium: 180.8 mg

About the Author: Susan Irby, the Bikini Chef, is a radio host for Bikini Lifestyles on 790 KABC, an author and specialist in healthy “bikini” cuisine. Follow her at twitter.com/thebikinichef or visit her online at thebikinichef.com.