Summer Shape Up: New and Improved “Diet” Food
Long gone are the days of gross, cardboard-like tasting “diet food.” I can remember when the only supposedly healthy alternatives to regular food were things like Slim Fast shakes or meal bars. Ugh.
Beyond the fact that they are loaded with sugars and gross chemicals, most of them taste like absolute crap.
Well, fortunately, many food companies are catching onto the fact that America wants low calorie, natural foods that are actually good for you and make dieting easier.
Allure magazine recently published an article titled “Diet Saviors” and gave the low down on the new crop of low calorie foods, and I read it start to finish. Now, remember to avoid silly fad diets altogether, but substituting some of these wonderful foods into your diet may not be such a bad or painful task. Who knows, you might actually like them…
1. Tofu Shirataki Noodles- Okay, the name sounds weird and gross, but give them a chance. The noodles come with only 20 calories per serving! What other pasta dish will you find that enables you to eat with absolutely no guilt. Just think, if you gorged yourself and ate a whole three servings, you would have only taken in 60 calories.
2. Dr. Praeger’s Spinach Pancakes- At only 80 calories per patty, these pancakes have supposedly become a staple at New York cocktail parties. They are low in cholesterol and saturated fats, as well as free of preservatives and artificial ingredients. I think they made a good snack for lunch along with something else like fruit or a salad.
3. Calabro Fat-free Ricotta Cheese- Fans of the South Beach Diet use ricotta cheese for a multitude of recipes to satisfy their sweet tooth. But, anyone else can use it as a great breakfast alternative because it has no sugar and is very high in protein. Top it with some fruit and you’re good to go.
4. Knight’s Gourmet Cholesterol-Free Lightly Salted Popcorn- I am all for any alternative to the usual movie theater popcorn, which can pack a whopping 1000 calories in one small bucket. This version tastes both light and salty enough. The company also makes it in 100 calorie bags to help with portion control.
5. Swiss Miss Diet Hot Chocolate- I am a huge fan of these packets that contain only 25 calories per serving. I love mixing it with a glass of skim milk to satisfy my chocolate craving or Allure suggests adding it to your morning coffee to give it an extra kick.
6. Skinny Cow Low Fat Ice Cream Sandwiches- Nothing makes me happier than more desserts that I can enjoy guilt-free, and that is exactly what Skinny Cow provides. A good sized ice cream sandwich is only 140 calories and takes me back to my childhood days of enjoying the less than healthy version poolside on summer days. I’m glad that now there is an alternative that will keep me looking fit and trim in my grown up bikini.
7. Fage Total Yogurt- This is a recent discovery for me and let me just say that I am hooked, with a capital H. It is Greek yogurt and has a thicker texture. I love mixing it with honey and fruit for just about any meal of the day.
8. Gnu Foods Flavor & Fiber Bars- Thank god someone created a better alternative to most of the icky protein bars out there. These have less than 150 calories, 12 grams of fiber, and only a couple natural ingredients.
9. Laughing Cow Light Gourmet Cheese Wedges- I love this option instead of fatty cheeses. They come in individual wedges that are easy to spread on crackers or snack on with veggies. Or, if you’re planning on hosting a cocktail party, substitute these for the usual cheese slices.
10. Dreyer’s/Edy’s Slow Churned Light Ice Cream- Another great alternative to fatty desserts. Keep a carton of this in the fridge versus the usual Haagen Daaz because the slow churning makes the ice cream taste rich and creamy, yet has half the fat and one third of the calories.
11. Cascadian Farms Organic Sweet Frozen Cherries- Although it is still fruit, the syrupy glaze that comes after microwave these babies make it seem more like a treat. With a dollop of Cool Whip Free, it is another great dessert alternative.
With all of these great options, there really is no excuse to avoid low calorie foods anymore. Their taste is just as good, if not better, than the high calorie alternatives.
So, throw some of these into your daily diet and give yourself that boost you need in the last month before returning to campus!