How to Cut Calories From Your Sandwich

Use this 30-second guide to reduce calories for weight loss

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Do you pack yourself a sandwich for lunch everyday? Bringing a homemade lunch to work with you is one of the easiest ways to lose weight when you're on the job. But you should be especially careful to make a diet-friendly sandwich. It's easy to cut calories from your sandwich with a few simple tips that take just 30 seconds or less to learn.

Choose Low Calorie Bread

Delicious, thick, crusty bread can be full of fat and calories.

So what's the easiest way to cut calories from your sandwich? Choose diet-friendly bread. Stay away from bagels, baguettes, and hearty rolls. Many of these bread choices will send your calorie count through the roof. Choose one of these low-calorie bread choices instead. They are easy to find in most grocery stores.

If you prefer a more natural approach, try making a sandwich with no bread at all.  Wrap your healthy sandwich filling in bibb lettuce or make a sandwich using a peeled and seeded cucumber as the shell. They don't travel as well as traditional sandwiches but if you carry them in a plastic container they aren't as messy.

Choose Diet-Friendly Sandwich Filling

Once you've chosen your healthy bread, you'll build your sandwich around a meat or meat-free filling. Get creative and combine different choices to find new flavors.  But be wary of meat or fish spreads that sound healthy. Many brands of salmon spread, for example, contain protein and healthy nutrients, but the fish is often combined with cream cheese so the spread is very high in calories

Healthy Sandwich Protein Choices

  • Thin sliced deli ham: 60 calories per serving
  • Thin sliced deli turkey: 60 calories per serving
  • Thin sliced deli roast beef: 80 calories per serving
  • Thin sliced deli chicken: 50 calories per serving

Vegetarian Sandwich Choices

  • Grilled eggplant: 20 calories (grilled without oil)
  • Grilled portobello mushroom: 15 calories (grilled without oil)

Sandwich Toppings

  • Banana peppers
  • Green peppers sliced thin
  • Cucumber
  • Tomato
  • Jalapeno peppers sliced thin
  • Shredded cabbage
  • Plain or grilled onions
  • Sun dried tomatoes
  • Basil leaves
  • Alfalfa or bean sprouts
  • Iceberg lettuce, spinach, bibb lettuce or greens of your choice

Pack your sandwich with as many of the toppings as possible. These low-calorie veggies add spice, flavor and crunch to your sandwich so it tastes more filling and decadent.

Choose Healthy Sandwich Spreads

Hold the mayo!  The spread that you choose for your sandwich takes up the least space in your low-calorie sandwich but can provide the most fat. If you add plenty of toppings from the list above then you may not want to add any spread at all.

If you do add a spread, mustard is your lowest calorie option with just 3 calories per serving.

Creamy spreads have more flavor and sometimes even provide healthy fats, but they are very high in calories. So be careful about how much you use if you want to cut calories from your sandwich.

  • Olive oil: 119 calories per tablespoon
  • Olive tapenade: 30 calories per tablespoon
  • Avocado: 40 calories per tablespoon
  • Pesto: 80 calories per tablespoon

It's really easy to cut calories from your sandwich to create a healthy meal. Just fill your fridge with the best diet-friendly ingredients and experiment with new flavors to stay satisfied while you slim down.

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