chocolate protein balls on a wooden board

These protein balls can be a great snack to manage energy levels, support hormonal balance, and provide a dose of protein and iron without excess sugar. Enjoy one or two as a nutritious snack throughout the day.


  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 tablespoons raw cacao powder (for a chocolatey flavor without added sugar)
  • 1/2 cup natural almond or peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup honey or maple syrup (adjust to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1-2 tablespoons water (if needed for consistency)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Optional: 1-2 tablespoons collagen powder


Combine Dry Ingredients: In a mixing bowl, combine rolled oats, almond meal, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, shredded coconut, raw cacao powder, and a pinch of salt. Stir well to mix evenly.

Wet Ingredients: Add almond or peanut butter, honey or maple syrup, vanilla extract, and collagen powder (if using) to the dry ingredients. Mix thoroughly until a sticky, uniform mixture forms. If the mixture seems too dry, add water, a tablespoon at a time, until it holds together easily.

Form Balls: Take small portions of the mixture and roll it between your palms to form bite-sized balls. If the mixture is too sticky, slightly wet your hands to make rolling easier.Chill: Place the formed balls on a baking sheet or plate lined with parchment paper and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to firm up.

Storage: Once firm, transfer the protein balls to an airtight container and store them in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Nutritional note: These tasty treats are packed with essential fatty acids, and nutrients such as fibre key for gut health, metabolism,  glowing skin and hormonal balance. Nut consumption is also associated with a 15% reduction in the incidence of cardiovascular disease. Research shows nuts are one of the natural plant foods with a unique profile high in beneficial unsaturated fats and low in saturated fatty acids (4-16%).



Ros, E. (2010). Health benefits of nut consumption. Nutrients, 2(7), 652-682.

Palacios, O. M., Cortes, H. N., Jenks, B. H., & Maki, K. C. (2020). Naturally occurring hormones in foods and potential health effects. Toxicology Research and Application, 4, 2397847320936281.


Contact the Athlete Sanctuary and learn how we can help you to increase health, wellbeing and performance.

About the Author: Kate Smyth is a Sports naturopath, nutritionist and female-centric running coach. She is the founder of the Athlete Sanctuary- a holistic healthcare clinic for athletes of all levels and sporting codes. Kate has a thirst for knowledge with two bachelor’s and a master’s degree under her belt. She has been involved in sports for many decades and competed for Australia in the Commonwealth Games and Olympic Games marathons with a personal best time of 2 hours 28 minutes. 

Photo of a bowl of pumpkin and ginger soup with a spoon.

We all know that winter weather calls for delicious, heart warming soups. This delicious pumpkin soup recipe has the added bonus of ginger – an ingredient that aids digestion and is packed with antioxidants that help prevent arthritis, inflammation and various types of infection. There are so many health benefits of ginger!


1kg pumpkin, peeled, seeds removed and cut into 4cm pieces

75g ginger, roughly chopped

2 garlic cloves

2 tbs extra virgin olive oil

1L (4 cups) vegetable or chicken stock

2 tbs finely chopped dill

1/3 cup (50g) toasted hazelnuts, chopped


Preheat your oven to 180 degC.

Place your pumpkin, ginger and garlic on a large baking tray and drizzle with oil. Season, then toss to coat. Roast for 30 minutes or until the pumpkin is soft (don’t let the garlic burn).

Puree mixture in a blender or food processor with 2 cups (500ml) of stock, then season. If there are lumps then strain through a fine sieve. Place the soup in a large saucepan with remaining 2 cups (500ml) of stock and warm over a medium-low heat.

Divide the soup between 4 bowls and serve with dill and toasted hazelnuts and what ever other toppings you love on your soup – if you wish a dollop of marscapone.

Enjoy x

Photo of a glass dish of apple and rhubarb crumble.


Rhubarb is a great source of vitamin C for immunity, magnesium, potassium and calcium. Rhubarb is rich in vitamin K1, important for bone health. A half cup of cooked rhubarb provides more than one-third of the recommended dietary intake of vitamin K1, along with two grams of fiber (great for overall gut health, constipation and lowering cholesterol).

Then there’s the apple – incredibly nutritious and offering multiple health benefits including fibre and a rich load of antioxidants. So what could be better than combining the two into a delicious gluten-free crumble?

This delicious, warming apple and rhubarb crumble is the perfect, healthy winter warming dessert and even better served with some creamy natural yoghurt or your favourite icecream!

• 4 apples peeled and cored
• 3 cups fresh rhubarb
• 2 tbs soft butter
• 4 tbs coconut sugar
• 4 tbs almond meal
• 4 tbs rice flour
• 1/2 tsp cinnamon
• 2 tbs pumpkin seeds
• 4 tbs shredded coconut
• 2 tbs sliced almonds
• Juice of 1/2 fresh lemon

• Preheat oven to 160c
• Place diced apple and rhubarb in a large pot
• Squeeze lemon juice over these two ingredients
• Cook over low heat until soft.
• Place cooked fruit mixture in an oven proof dish. A glass Pyrex dish is perfect.
• Place all dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix through. Rub the soft butter through the mixture to form a slightly lumpy crumble using clean fingers.
• Spoon crumble topping over cooked apple and rhubarb and place in fan forced oven for 20 minutes or until brown.

Most of all…..enjoy! x