How can you get your daily chocolate fix -- and eat less sugar or calories, too? That's a million-dollar question that several companies are banking on people asking. Over the past few years, the sugar-free and portion-controlled chocolate market has exploded. There are all sorts of sugar-free versions of favorite chocolate bars. And you can now buy individually wrapped chocolate bars or sticks in 60- to 100-calorie portions, along with the ever-popular kisses.
To help you decide among all the options...
But good general advice to follow is to keep your carbs consistent -- eat the same amount at breakfast, lunch, and dinner to keep blood sugar from spiking or dipping too low. Weisenberger recommends 45 grams as a target for the three main meals of the day. "If you go lower than 30 grams at a meal, it's going to be really hard to get all the nutrients you need, such as fiber and phytochemicals," the health-boosting nutrients in fruits and vegetables.
This sample meal plan provides 1,400 calories. Supplement with healthy snacks to reach your personal calorie goals.
If you're rushed in the mornings, make breakfast a snap with mix-and-match prepared items such as hardboiled eggs, nuts or seeds, a part-skim cheese stick, peanut butter, or yogurt for protein; toast, crispbread, or unsweetened instant oatmeal for whole grains; plus any kind of fruit -- dried fruit, a banana, an apple.
Avocado Toast and Egg
Café au lait made with a half cup 1% milk
Avocado Toast and Egg
This has to be one of the most satisfying, easy breakfasts around, thanks to a helping of fiber from the avocado and whole-grain bread. For an extra flavor kick, sprinkle with Cajun seasoning or smoked paprika.
Makes 1 serving.
1 slice 100% whole grain bread
salt and pepper
1. Toast bread. Scoop out avocado and mash onto toast. Top with a poached or soft-boiled egg and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Per serving: 235 calories, 10 g protein, 19 g carbohydrate, 14 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 164 mg cholesterol, 7 g fiber, 3 g sugar, 194 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 52%
Getting out of the two-slices-of-bread sandwich rut can be an easy way to control carbs. Stick to a small whole wheat pita or enjoy some rye crispbreads alongside a protein- and veggie-loaded salad or soup for a satisfying midday meal.
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