Fig Energy Balls – A Healthy Hypo Option

These Fig Energy Balls are bite-sized wonders that offer a wholesome alternative to sugary snacks. Whether you’re looking to satisfy your midday cravings or fuel up before exercise, discover why fig energy balls can be a healthier snack and hypo option.


fig energy balls on a plate

In a world where convenience often trumps nutrition, finding healthy snacks that are both delicious and energizing isn’t easy. So enter fig energy balls, the perfect solution for those seeking a healthier on-the-go snack.

Bursting with natural sweetness and packed with nutrients, these bite-sized wonders offer a wholesome alternative to sugary snacks without compromising on taste. But the best thing is they can actually be a healthier and tasty alternative to many of the refined sugary options for treating some hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) episodes.

Read on to explore the benefits of managing blood sugar levels with energy balls, the nutritional benefits of figs and tips on making the best homemade energy balls.


why energy balls make a great Hypo option for Diabetes Management


For people living with diabetes or those prone to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), maintaining stable glucose levels throughout the day can be a tricky task. Then add to that actually finding tasty and nutritious snacks when you are out and about is a challenge that doesn’t always support your blood glucose management goals.

That’s where Energy Balls come in – these small, portable treats provide a balanced combination of carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats that can help prevent blood sugar dips and sustain energy levels.

These fig balls are packed with the natural sweetness of figs and an assortment of nutrient-rich ingredients, that not only make these energy balls delicious but also offer a convenient solution for those seeking a hypo-friendly snack alternative.

fig energy balls in a bowl with added cacao nibs and hazelnuts

Managing Blood Sugar Levels with Fig Energy Balls

Not all “hypos” are the same!

Some are quick and need fast-acting carbs like glucose tablets and sugary fruit juice to bring levels out of dangerous ranges. However, there are times when maybe there is:

Too much insulin on board or incorrect dosing has happened for a meal

You are about to exercise/walk and you know levels will drop

Or you have a slot in the day where you tend to have a blood glucose slump (My daughter’s is at the end of the school day and before dinner)

It’s in this kind of situation where a slow-release but high-sugar content snack can really help. Consumption of an energy ball can help prevent sudden drops in blood sugar levels and provide sustained energy without triggering hypoglycemic episodes.

Energy balls have helped us “feed” exercise (like the walk home from school) and prevent those end-of-day slumps along with adding some extra health benefits to our diets.


What are the Benefits of Figs


Figs, apparently, are not actually a fruit but an inverted flower! Nevertheless, they have been enjoyed for centuries due to their delightful taste and unique texture. Beyond their delectable flavour, figs also offer an array of health benefits too.

There are of course differences in the nutritional profile of fresh and dried figs. Any dried fruit will always have a higher concentration of calories and sugar as all of the water has been taken away. However, the dried version of any fruit will also have a higher fibre content. Both dried and fresh fruit are great wholefoods to include in your diet, which you can read more about in The Benefits of a Wholefood Diet and Diabetes

I chose figs as the key ingredient as they contain less naturally occurring sugars than some other dried fruits. They also have a moderate glycaemic index which combined with the dietary fibre in them should work together to not spike blood glucose levels too much.

Additionally, figs are:

Nutrient-dense – rich in essential vitamins such as A &K, minerals such as potassium, calcium, iron, and magnesium, antioxidants and polyphenols (good for the gut)

Fibre-rich – they are an excellent source of dietary fibre that will work to slow down the absorption of sugars into the bloodstream. Plus the more fibre in our diet is good for us and our guts

Natural sweetness – Unlike processed sugars found in many shop-bought snacks, figs offer natural sweetness without causing drastic fluctuations in blood glucose levels.

Sustained energy release – The combination of fibre from figs and other ingredients like oats and nuts, provides a steady release of glucose into the bloodstream, preventing rapid rises or crashes in blood sugar.


What you will need to make these fig energy balls

ingredients for fig energy balls

Dried Figs, Dates & Apricots

  • All have a Lower Glycaemic Index and fructose content
  • Are fibre and nutrient-rich
  • Slower to release glucose into the bloodstream compared to other dried fruits

Walnuts

  • A very nutritious nut
  • High in fibre, Omega 3 fat and antioxidants

Rolled Oats

  • Naturally gluten-free, however, it’s in the processing that contamination with other cereals may occur.
  • They are a whole grain, full of fibre, essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
  • Low GI so a lower impact on blood sugar levels

Nut Butter

  • Nutritionally full of fibre, protein, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals
  • I used Almond butter but you could use any nut or seed butter of your choice

Equipment Needed

Small blender or Hand blender with food processor attachment

Spatula / Mixing spoon

Weighing Scales


How to make Fig Energy Balls

This is such a simple recipe to make and really only takes 5 -10 minutes. You will need a small food processor or I use a hand blender that also has a small food processor attachment.

Start by adding all your ingredients to your food processor. I find it easiest to weigh everything directly into the food processor bowl.

Then whiz everything until all ingredients are chopped, combined and start forming a combined dough-like mixture. I do have to use a pulse sometimes to get ingredients to move around.

Spoon out some of the mixture and weigh it on the scales. Each of my balls was approx 36g. Roll and place in a suitable sealed storage container.


Tips on Making the Best Homemade Energy Balls

Energy balls typically can be made with any combination of dried fruits, nuts, seeds, and flavourings This recipe is my basic go-to but I always keep the figs as my main ingredient. Nevertheless, I do love to play around with combinations so here are some suggestions along with my top tips:

Experiment with flavours – While figs alone create a delightful taste, don’t be afraid to get creative! Consider adding spices such as cinnamon or nutmeg for warmth or extracts like vanilla or almond for extra depth of flavour.

Include a variety of nuts and seeds – Adding different nuts and seeds enhances the texture and increases and changes the energy balls’ nutritional value. Try almonds, pecan, cashews, hazelnuts, chia seeds, flaxseeds – there is an endless list of options!

Use dates as a natural sweetener – If you find that your mixture needs additional sweetness beyond what the figs provide naturally, add some extra dates or a little sugar free syrup.

Don’t forget binding agents – To hold everything together in ball form without crumbling apart easily when handled, you need a binding agent which in this case it is a nut butter. I love almond butter but you can use peanut, cashew and even seed buttons like sunflower seed.

Experiment with coatings – After shaping your energy balls, consider rolling them in different coatings for added visual appeal and flavour variation. I added some chopped mixed nuts to mine but you could try some desiccated coconut or small seeds


Storing your energy balls

fig energy balls in a glass storage box

To maintain freshness and for a firmer ball, store your dried fruit energy balls in the fridge. They will keep in a sealed airtight container for up to 2 weeks.


Diabetes Note

These nutritious hypo-friendly energy balls are full of healthy fats, protein and fibre to slow down the release of the fructose (sugar). The combination of fibre from figs and other ingredients like oats and nuts, provides a steadier release of glucose into the bloodstream, preventing rapid rises or crashes in blood sugar.


Carb Counting

The overall carb count for this based on the ingredients we would count for is:

  • 120g of Dried Figs (Lidl) = 69.4g of carbs
  • 60g of Dried Dates (Lidl) = 38.8g of carbs
  • 60g of Dried Figs (Lidl) = 25.7g of carbs
  • 60g of Rolled Oats (Flahaven) = 38.4g of carbs

Now add all the carbs together – 69.4+38.8+25.7+38.4= 172.3g of carbs

Finally divide this by the serving size, 12 – 172/12 = 14g of carb per ball

Please note this carb count amount per portion is based on the standard ingredients listed above and may differ depending on what you use and how much you choose to eat.

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Fig Energy Balls

Fig Energy Balls

Recipe by Michelle

Bursting with natural sweetness and packed with nutrients, these bite-sized Fig Energy Balls offer a wholesome alternative to sugary snacks

Course: Sweet TreatsCuisine: BritishDifficulty: Very Easy
5.0 from 1 vote
Servings

12

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

0

minutes
Total time

10

minutes
Cook Mode

Keep the screen of your device on

Ingredients

  • 120 g 120 dried figs

  • 60 g 60 dried dates

  • 60 g 60 dried apricots

  • 60 g 60 porridge oats

  • 60 g 60 walnuts

  • 3 tbsp 3 nut or seed butter

Directions

  • Start by adding all your ingredients to your food processor.
  • Then whiz everything until all ingredients are chopped, combined and start forming a dough-like mixture.
  • Spoon out roughly a tablespoon of the mixture and weigh it on the scales.
    Each ball was approx 36g.
    Roll in your hands and place in a suitable sealed storage container.
  • Repeat step 3 another 11 times.

Equipment

Tips and Notes

  • It’s quicker to weigh everything directly into the food processor bowl.
  • Diabetes Notes – The combination of fibre from figs and other ingredients like oats and nuts, provides a steadier release of glucose into the bloodstream, preventing rapid rises or crashes in blood sugar.
  • Carb Counting – Each Energy Ball is @14g of carbs. See above for a breakdown.
Michelle Rorke avatar

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