With summer here, so comes a renewed interest in how we will fit all of the outdoor activities into our schedules. Being social may mean you feel you have less ability to make calorie conscious decisions about what you and your family eats each day. There will be meals and days where your best intentions still don’t mean you achieve your goals. It happens to all of us. But let’s start with some tips about how to easily reduce the calories you consume for breakfast to help you get the balance you want. Breakfast is important in helping to remind your body that it’s a new day, but you don’t need to conserve energy by limiting activity because you’re starving. If you aren’t hungry for breakfast when you get out of bed, try eating a little less the night before and taking a quick walk or doing a few household chores.
Your morning cup of Joe or tea is an easy place to start the routine. One blue packet, Equal® (aspartame), instead of 2 teaspoons of sugar and you’re already 32 calories ahead in the game. Going through the drive thru? When you place your order, ask for the lite sweetener. If you like adding flavor to your coffee then consider adding flavor extract rather than flavor syrup at home or ask for one less pump of flavor when ordering. Give yourself a few days before you decide if you like it or not. Don’t compare it to what you used to order, but ask yourself if you like what you ordered.
What about the creamer, you ask? Well, if the only way you get any dairy during the day is in your coffee, then consider a latte with low fat milk to get the benefits of milk while reducing the calories from dairy with more fat — like half and half. Another option is a low-cal Iced Orange Cappuccino. It’s low on calories, but full of flavor! If you are more of a hot chocolate person then try the no added sugar options that taste great.
Some fruit can also help you get the sweetness you want to start your day. What about grains like oatmeal, toast, or a waffle sweetened with some lite syrup and some fruit? It can be in the ready-to-go form (think a banana) and either a portion of cereal or a portion of trail mix with fruits and nuts, or a smoothie you whirl up and drink during your commute. Does protein help keep you full? Try some lite yogurt.