In addition to adding more fresh fruits and vegetables to my diet, I’ve also been looking for ways to reduce the calorie count without actually missing those calories! Here are a few quick ways I’ve discovered:
- Salad dressing – I love creamy dressings; I can’t help it. But I have recently been mixing my own and it has turned out wonderfully. Instead of dousing my greens with ranch dressing (my favorite), I have been mixing it with taco sauce first. My ratio tends to be 3 parts taco sauce to one part ranch. I still end up with the creaminess factor, but with all of that flavor, I don’t miss the straight ranch.
- Mexican food – Yet another dietary speed bump for me, Mexican food of all kinds. I can eat Mexican food three times a day every day and rarely get tired of it. But we know that queso-drenched deep-fried burritos are not the way to watch your waistline. I tend to modify tacos personally. I substitute corn tortillas for the flour, remove cheese/sour cream, add guacamole, and choose the vegetarian filling. One of my favorite chain places will actually do grilled Portobello mushrooms! I know the guacamole is still rather high in fat, but it is heart-healthy fat and delicious.
- Sandwiches – Most days I bring my lunch to work. It’s cheaper and I can control exactly what I eat. Sandwiches are an easy option, but let’s not pile on the bologna and American cheese. I try to fill mine with veggies first, a flavorful slice of cheese, and a tasty spread. One of my favorite combinations starts with a sandwich thin, then I add roasted red peppers and fresh spinach, spread the bread with guacamole, and add a slice of pepper jack cheese.