Below are some common pitfalls and tips on how to make better choices.
Fast food: Don’t automatically think that the salad is your best choice. Sure the lettuce and fresh cut vegetables are excellent, however it’s the rest of the items as well as the dressing that can sabotage your caloric and fat intake. The great news is that chain restaurants have to provide caloric information on the menu and have nutritional information available when requested. Chick-Fil-A is a good fast food option when available. The grilled chicken nuggets without sauce along with a fruit cup and water are an exceptional choice.
Convenience store: Fresh fruit is almost always available in a convenience store. As a protein source, look for lean luncheon meats, cheese or yogurt. Nuts are another good choice, but beware of the calories. A serving of almonds is just about 10-12 nuts. Pistachios are always a good option because of the extra time it takes to shell them it feels like you are getting more bang for your snacking buck.
Grocery store: The culinary world at your fingertips. Shop the exterior aisles hitting the fresh fruit and vegetables, which you may find already cut and ready to eat. Prepackaged, individual items may also help reduce overeating. Fresh sliced deli meat is another great choice. In the dairy section, hard boiled eggs are typically found along with cottage cheese or yogurt. When purchasing yogurt, to avoid added sugars, try to buy plain and add your own fruit for flavor.
Don’t go into panic mode when faced with pitfalls. Options are available if you are willing to take a few extra moments and think of your health first.
By: Molly McBrayer, Clinical Manager, Roper St. Francis Bariatric and Metabolic Services