Wednesday, May 25, 2011

3 healthy lunch-on-the-go suggestions

When you’re trying to stick to a healthy eating plan, brown-bagging it to work can sometimes be a challenge. But with a little forethought, you can purchase and/or prepare South Beach Diet-friendly foods that will travel well, taste great, and keep you on track at lunchtime. Try these tasty suggestions for on-the-go lunches:
  1. Enjoy a healthy sandwich. Look for nutritious breads that will hold up well when used for Phase 2 traveling sandwiches: 100 percent whole-wheat or whole-grain sliced bread, whole-wheat pitas, and whole-grain tortillas are terrific options. If you’re on Phase 1, forgo the sandwich bread and opt for a roll-up with lettuce. Be sure to choose lean deli meats like turkey breast, chicken breast, roast beef, and ham. Make sure you select varieties without added sugars (for instance, avoid honey-baked ham) and serve deli meats with South Beach Diet-friendly condiments like Dijon mustard or sugar-free salsa.
    South Beach Diet tip: Make a meatless sandwich using sliced veggies, reduced-fat cheese, and/or hummus. If you’re on Phase 1 shred the veggies and cheese and roll up in a lettuce leaf.
  2. Prepare a salad. Make a hearty Cobb or chef salad for one or more using dark, leafy greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, avocado, reduced-fat cheese, turkey bacon, and/or lean deli meats. Divvy it up into separate containers for any family member on the go. Put the dressing in a separate small container to add just before eating.
    South Beach Diet tip: Select a salad dressing with fewer than 3 grams of sugar per 2-tablespoon serving, or create your own dressing using extra-virgin olive oil, Dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar or lemon or lime juice, garlic, and fresh herbs.
  3. Consider soup. Lentil, split pea, and black bean soups are nutrient-dense, fiber-rich, satisfying choices, as are cold soups made from cauliflower or broccoli. Gazpacho is also an excellent choice for a hot-weather lunch. The great thing about soup is that you can prepare a big pot on a Sunday and it will last you a few days into the week. Hot soups can be packed in a microwavable container; cold soups in a thermos.
    South Beach Diet tip: Opt for broth-based soups over cream-based soups, which are high in saturated fat. On Phase 2, pass over soups that contain refined carbs (like white rice or white pasta) and concoct a homemade version using brown rice or whole-wheat pasta instead.

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