Build a Better Salad
Base: Spinach or spring mix. The darker the lettuce the more vitamins and minerals it has!
Protein: Beans, tofu, grilled chicken, tuna, or a hard boiled egg
Toppings: Add color and texture to your salad by adding fruits and vegetables! Craisins, sliced apples, peppers, or scallions are all great options!
Cheese: Great source of calcium! But watch your portions— it can contribute to unwanted calories and fat.
Dressing: Choose oil based dressings, and ask for it on the side so you can control the portion – balsamic vinaigrette, vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil.
Build a Better Sandwich
Base: Whole wheat bread, multigrain bread, rye bread, whole wheat roll, or a whole wheat wrap.
Did you know that 1 slice of bread has 80-120 calories, and 1 wrap can have nearly 250-400 calories!
Protein: Grilled chicken, turkey, tuna, egg, and tofu.
Cheese: 1 slice of Swiss or provolone is more than enough to add flavor and will limit added fat and calories!
Condiments: Hummus, mustard, honey mustard, or hot sauce are all better choices. It is important to choose healthier spreads, as one serving of mayonnaise has 100-200 calories!
Toppings: Lettuce, tomato, onion, cucumber, or peppers… add a variety to increase vitamins and minerals as well as flavor!
Step it up – grill it
Try to choose a snack that is not more than 100-200 calories! Choosing foods that have protein and fiber will help you feel full longer.
Protein: 6 ounces plain Greek Yogurt, 1 hard boiled egg, 1 ounce of nuts (almonds, walnuts, 1 tablespoon nut butters (peanut butter, sunflower, almond), or 2 ounces of hummus
When choosing nuts, try to look for unsalted varieties that have limited additives and seasonings!
Opt for broth based soups, these items tend to be lower in calories and fat! Soups that have more vegetables will provide more fiber that will help you to stay full longer! Some of the better options include: minestrone, bean chili, butternut, garden vegetable, and lentil.
It is important to check the sodium content of soups, they tend to contain a lot of salt! You should aim to consume less that 2000 mg per day!
Pizza and Pasta
Remember a few simple rules:
- Ask for whole wheat whenever possible
- Add colorful vegetables for added vitamins, minerals, and fiber!
- Go red and choose marinara sauce over white sauces.
- Pair it with a salad topped with lean protein—grilled chicken, fish, tofu, or beans.
Protein: Choose a veggie burger, turkey burger, or grilled chicken for a good source of protein with minimal fat and calories.
Bun: Whenever possible, increase your fiber by choosing a whole wheat bun, or putting it on whole grain or multigrain toast.
Toppings: You can add great crunch along with vitamins and minerals when you load on the vegetables!
Cheese: Choosing one slice of cheese or no cheese will limit unwanted calories and fat!
Protein: Choose lean protein whenever available—grilled chicken, turkey, fish, tofu, and beans!
Vegetable: Choose at least one vegetable that is either steamed, sautéed, or roasted. Try to avoid those that have been deep fried or have sauces and gravies as they typically have more calories, fat, and sodium!
Whole grains: Opt for menu items such as brown rice, quinoa, or whole grain pasta as they provide more fiber and will keep you full longer!
Sweetened beverages contain a lot of calories and little nutritional value. It is important to read the nutrition label for the calorie content and the serving size! Most companies put more than one serving per container so that they can make claims like “contains less than 100 calories per serving” when there are 2.5 servings per bottle—100 calories x 2.5 servings = 250 calories!
Top Picks: Water, Seltzer, Unsweetened Iced Tea, hot tea, and coffee with limited added sugar or creamer.
Try to Avoid: Soda, juice, energy drinks, sweet tea, and premade coffee beverages.
The goal is to drink at least 8 glasses or 64 ounces of water a day! If you participate in extensive physical activity you need to increase your intake before, hydrate every 15-20 minutes during exercise, and rehydrate after!
Flavorful Tips: Add sliced or frozen fruit to your water bottle to change the flavor and to add vitamins and minerals!