Easy ways to slash up to 500 calories from your day

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breakfast woman eating croissant juice

Losing weight often feels like an uphill battle. Counting calories is hard (and imperfect) work, declining dessert can make you feel like a bore, and packing your own meals requires time and investment.

Thankfully, there are a few easy tweaks to your daily diet that registered dietitians and nutritionists say can help you meet your healthy eating goals. While cutting calories shouldn’t be the sole focus of a healthy diet plan, it can be a good starting point for weight loss.

With that in mind, all of the swaps listed here are healthier options overall — not just because they are lower in calories, but also because they contain less sugar or more protein.

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Go savory, not sweet, at breakfast — slash 350 calories

Breakfast items like muffins, pancakes, and granola parfaits can pack a hefty portion of calories and — since they’re not always high in protein or fiber — leave you crashing later. 

Instead of starting out the day with sugar, many dietitians recommend going savory. Rather than a large blueberry muffin, pair a couple of poached eggs with wheat toast. As registered dietitian Nichola Whitehead told Business Insider, only one of those meals "will leave you feeling more energized and provide you with what your body needs to stay strong and healthy in the long term, i.e. vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fiber, as well as slow-release carbohydrates, lean protein, and healthy fats."

Conveniently, the egg-and-toast combo also packs about 350 calories less than a muffin. It’s a win-win.

 

Order bubbly water instead of soda — shave up to 300 calories

A large soda at your favorite fast-food chain can contain upwards of 300 calories. Pairing a seltzer or an unsweetened ice tea with your meal instead is an easy way to slash those extra calories. Plus, plenty of research suggests that liquid calories don’t fill you up the same way solid food does.

Cara Anselmo, a nutritionist and outpatient dietitian at New York’s Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, advises clients who are trying to lose weight to stop drinking soda, sweet tea, and other beverages with calories.

"If you drink 500 calories of liquid versus eating 500 calories of food you’re going to feel much less satiated, which is one of the reasons soda and sweetened drinks are such horrible things. You don’t get a sense of fullness," Anselmo told Business Insider.

Swap your granola for carrots and hummus — cut 400 calories

Granola is often associated with wholesome vegan hippies and long hikes in the woods, but it’s packed with sugar and calories. A cup can contain up to 600 calories — the same amount as about four cereal bars.

By comparison, carrots are high in fiber (great for digestion) and vitamin A (which helps keep skin glowing and eyesight healthy). Pair your crunchy snack with some creamy hummus for a protein boost to tide you over. In the meantime, you’ll also be cutting about 400 calories.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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