You run out the door 2 minutes later than usual and the last thing on you mind is grabbing something for lunch. Does it sound familiar? I think I am a pro of making it to work on time. A pro for bringing lunch – not so much. Although I always have some healthy snacks at work – apples, grapes, nuts – sometimes, I can get insanely hungry. The so called “wheel of fortune” seems to have an answer to all of my cravings.
The first on the list of goodies is Yoplait Original.
It seems like a semi-healthy snack, right? It has protein, very little fat per serving and only 170 calories. Considering that a snack should be around 200 calories, it is pretty darn good. One ingredient that cancels its all goodness to me is Mr. Sugar. It is the third in line on the list of ingredients. A balanced snack should have a pretty even ratio of protein to carbohydrates. 26grams per serving is nowhere near 5 grams of protein that Yoplait provides. Did I mention that this strawberry yogurt contains more sugar than it contains fruit? Let’s spin the wheel again.
Next – Dole Crisp Pineapple Mango.
The ingredients don’t look too bad. I can pronounce most of them; however, sneaky sugar made his way into this product as well. Pardon my question but why the heck would I need sugar with awesomely sweet pineapple and mango? Another Debbie Downer – calories. I know, it’s only 150 per serving but this little tiny orange cup is not going to fill me up whatsoever. I guess I pass on this snack as well.
I am looking for something more filling that involves a little more chewing. Here it is – Bob Evans Snack Size Sausage Cheese Sandwich.
It looks rather appetizing, has a decent marriage between carbs and protein. But there is always that “but.” If I had eaten the recommended serving size of these bite-size sandwiches, I would have consumed 50% of DI of fat and 33% of DI of sodium. Sorry Bobby – not tonight.
I spin the wheel again, unfortunately, all the prizes seem to look pretty much the same. I end up snacking on baby carrots for the rest of the day. This whole wheel of food fortune turned out to be one big misfortune so far.
I got home and my man and I made salmon with greek yogurt and green beans for dinner. I made sure not to forget to bring leftovers for lunch.
Apples (and grapes of course) are my hands down favorite office snacks. You know that saying: “one apple a day keeps a doctor away?” Well, I wouldn’t go as far as relying my health on good old apples but they are indeed a great choice if you just feel like hunger is right around the corner.
One medium apple contains about 14% of DI of Vitamin C and is rich in fiber that makes feel you full longer. Apples also make you regular, if you know what I mean 😉
Stock up on some granny smiths or honey crisps and keep them at your desk as an emergency snack
Downsize your plate
When you try to manage your weight by using a portion-control method, nothing looks sadder than a tiny piece of chicken with broccoli on a huge plate. “How is this supposed to fill me up,” you’re thinking to yourself. Although your belly will be more than happy with the amount of food it will receive, your mind is about scream: “Hell NO!” Upgrading or rather downgrading to a smaller plate will make your brain satisfied too. A lot of people eat “with their eyes” first and having a full plate, regardless the size, mentally satisfies their hunger.
Stay hydrated! I am probably the worst follower of this rule but, by far, it is one of the most important to stick to. Drink 64 ounces of water (approx. 2 liters) a day to keep proper hydration of your body. Did you know what sometimes your brain mistakes thirst for hunger? Make sure that you keep sipping on H2O throughout the day so you never feel thirsty. Water helps flush out excessive sodium and is a life saver after a weekend of unhealthy food choices.
If you don’t like plain water, spice it up with some lemon, ginger or cucumber. Keep a large water bottle on your desk at work whenever you need a quick refreshment.
Yesterday I mentioned a whole grain pasta. Today I want to show you an alternative – spaghetti squash. This little guy is full of nutrients that make him superior to his grainy friend. 1 cup provides almost 10% of DI (daily intake) of Vitamin C. It is also a source of niacin, riboflavin, vitamin K, A and B-6. Want more fiber and magnesium in your diet? Spaghetti squash is the way to go. Bake it in an oven on 400 degrees (poke some holes in it first) or cut in half and microwave for 6 minutes. Although it does not taste exactly like pasta, this swap-out makes Italian cuisine enjoyable for weight-conscious boys and girls.
Since it’s already November, I think it is the perfect time to start a new routine. I will be posting a quick healthy tip on my blog every day until December so feel free to leave me comments with topic suggestions!
If you are to follow only 1 weight-management advice, this one should be your choice. But I am not talking stricktly candy – I mean sweetened yogurts, sodas, pastry and any foods with the magic “sugar” on the list of ingredients. Next time when you’re at the grocery store shopping for pasta sauce, look what it is made of.
90% of sauces that you can find on the shelves have sugar as an ingredient. The sad thing is that in order to beat the system and make your spaghetti without unnecessary sugar, you will have to fork out about 7 or 8 dollars. It is a little bit too much to enjoy dinner semi-guilt-free, me thinks. If you want to indulge in pasta once in a while (insert a whole grain reminder here!!!), try making your own sauce. It will be equally delish and at least you have control over what is in it.