Wondering why it's tough to shed pounds during the warm-weather months, even though you're more active than ever? "Summer means you're eating on the go," notes Frances Largeman-Roth, RD, co-author of The CarbLovers Diet. "It can be a challenge to spot options that aren't loaded with calories, fat, and sodium."
No worrieswe did the work for you, rounding up quick picks that won't weigh you down. Almost all have slimming fiber or Resistant Starch (RS), both essential parts of The CarbLovers Diet that help you get lean by keeping you fuller longer. So whether you find yourself taking a road trip, killing time between flights, or enjoying a ball game, you can eat light with these best bites.
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On the road
The hunger hold-up: You're hours away from your destination and need a nosh.
Good-for-you grabs: Pull over at a rest stop convenience store for a bag of potato or tortilla chips; go for the snack size, roughly 1.25 ounces, so you're not tempted to munch your way cross-country. Or pick up a small banana, a staple of The CarbLovers Diet. If you've got a thing for sweets, opt for ones with natural ingredients like a single-serve Häagen-Dazs ice cream cup (vanilla, strawberry, and coffee are lowest in calories) or a FrütStix frozen-fruit bar.
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For something heartier, visit KFC or Popeyes, and order mashed potatoes with gravy, plus a nonbreaded, unfried chicken wing and a side of green beans. And if you pass a roadside grocery store, try this DIY salad bar rice bowl: Layer 1 cup of brown rice (about the size of your fist) with a few thin strips of fish and some roasted veggies. Your road trip just got gourmet!
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The hunger hold-up: Boarding is in 30 minutesand your stomach is growling.
Good-for-you grabs: "Make a dash to a newsstand and pick up a small bag of dry-roasted or raw almonds," Largeman-Roth says. One ounce (about 24 nuts) is the magic number to keep calories in check, but most snack-size bags come double or triple that; so share with your travel buddy. Enjoy a few Triscuits or Wheat Thins, too, and you're ready to fly. Just steer clear of those super-big Cinnabonseach one contains 880 calories and 36 grams of fat.
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Have a layover?
Grab a meal at the airport's Mexican restaurant. Order a chicken fajita with extra veggies on a small soft corn tortilla. Then ask for some guacamole and cheesenot heaps, just about 2 tablespoons (the size of a golf ball) of each. If it's breakfast time, get some oatmeal (easy to pick up at Starbucks or Au Bon Pain), and stir in a small spoonful of dried fruit and a tiny bit of honey. Now sit back and savor your mealyou've got the time, after all.
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At the ballpark
The hunger hold-up: You're catching a baseball game (or tennis match or beach-volleyball tournament) with only cheese fries and nachosat up to 1,500 calories a plate!in sight.
Good-for-you grabs:Popcorn, that classic stadium staple, is a filling snack; buy a box, not a tub, to share. "But skip the kettle corn, which has extra sugar and calories," Largeman-Roth says. Craving concession-stand food? Split a soft pretzel: Half is about 175 calories.
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A healthy home run
If you want more of a meal, scout out a sandwich vendor. Order a whole-grain roll piled with 5 slices of lean turkey and as much lettuce, cucumber, and tomato as you'd like; add a slice of cheese and a squirt of a low-cal condiment like ketchup or mustard.
Want to suss out your options in advance? Many parks now post the names of their vendors and sample menus online, so look for healthy-sounding eats, like "fresh fare," "made-to-order deli," or "grill," where you can often find a salad pick. Salad at the stadium? Score.