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Filling Up on Low-Fat Food

It Worked for Me!
WebMD Feature

Does losing weight seem like pie in the sky? Not so, if you make low-fat food your friend. Luckily, many naturally low-fat foods -- fruits, veggies, whole grains, legumes -- are fully loaded with fiber and nutrients, which makes them great diet foods.

It's the fiber that fills you up, and keeps you from pigging out. "Studies show that if you start a meal with a big salad, you'll end up eating less at that meal," says Kathleen Zelman, WebMD's director of nutrition. It's why these foods help with healthy weight loss.

Will your family switch to low-fat food? Can you entice them to choose carrots over candy? We asked WebMD's community: What are your best ideas for filling up on foods that aren't fattening?

Here are proven ideas from parents trying to eat healthy every day:


  • I let my kids fill up on fruits and veggies BEFORE dinner.
  • While I'm cooking dinner, and the kids are hungry, I cut up fresh fruits, veggies, and cheese and let them snack. They are much more willing to eat their veggies that way. I don't care if they are full by dinnertime, because they've already eaten the healthiest part of the meal!


  • The kids see us eat a salad almost every night, so they both love salad, too. Broccoli slaw is also a huge hit. It comes bagged with shredded broccoli, red cabbage, and carrots. They love it with a sweet dressing, like poppy seed or French.


  • I do not have a problem getting my kids to eating anything. We've always made it fun, and we started early. We made sure it was colorful -- colorful fruits and veggies in a colorful bowl.


  • We keep healthy whole foods in the house! I'd much rather DS eat an apple than drink the juice.


  • I give my kids veggies or fruit to snack on before dinner while I finish preparing the meal. That way, they eat them while they are hungriest -- instead of leaving them on the plate.


  • I put unsweetened applesauce instead of syrup on French toast. On waffles, I use low-fat vanilla yogurt in place of syrup. I also use applesauce in place of oil when baking muffins and making pancakes -- or add mashed bananas to the batter for a different flavor. 


  • I put out fresh fruits and vegetables at every meal -- especially if people are hanging out in the kitchen waiting for their food to be cooked!


  • My kids love frozen vegetables. They think it is a treat to eat them still frozen.

Love Those Low-Fat Food Ideas!

These WebMD readers have learned the most important trick -- making healthy foods easy to grab, says Zelman. "Studies have shown that it works, cutting everything up," says Zelman. "If it's easy and right there, they will grab it. Otherwise, they're into cookies, chips, and other junk."

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