Is the Lunch Box Diet Healthy?
Q. "My friend's new diet has her eating certain foods from a lunchbox all day. Does this work?"
A. She's doing the Lunch Box Diet, which started in the UK and is catching on in the US. The plan recommends packing a combination of protein, veggies, and low-fat dressing to graze on from midmorning until dinnertime. The theory? Healthy snacks help keep blood-sugar levels balanced and cravings at bay. "Planning ahead and bringing healthy foods to work is smart," says Keri Gans, RD, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. But this diet may not give you everything you need. For example, you're supposed to eat whole grains only on days when you're superactive. It also doesn't fully address what you should eat for breakfast and dinner. Bottom line: Sure, pack a lunchbox. But instead of just veggies and protein, add some fruit, low-fat yogurt, and whole-grain crackers or bread -- and eat healthy morning, noon, and night.
Originally published in FITNESS magazine, July/August 2009.
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