Egg whites are the diet-friendly breakfast of champions.
Skim right on past the diner menu's egg white omelet. "The yolk is where a lot of the nutrition is! It actually contains over 40 percent of the protein and more than 90 percent of the calcium, iron, and B vitamins that are in a whole egg," says Anne Mauney, RD, blogger at fANNEtasticfood.com. Besides being more satisfying, "you get all of the healthy fat-soluble vitamins, A, D, E and K, only when you eat the whole egg."
Granola and yogurt is a smart start to the day.
"Often granola and yogurt is really just dessert in disguise since many brands are packed with sugar," Mauney says. Look for plain, no-sugar-added Greek yogurt for protein and choose a granola with less than 10 grams of sugar per serving. Toss in fresh fruit for sweetness and some nuts for healthy fat and staying power—and for a meal that more closely resembles breakfast than it does an ice cream sundae!
Eating less = weighing less.
"Chronic calorie restriction can actually cause weight gain because it increases stress hormones," says Robyn Coale, RD, owner of Nutshell Nutrition in New York City. Eat balanced meals and don't fear snacks. Between-meal bites reduce nutritional stress and tame your appetite so "next time you eat you won't want to gobble down everything in sight!" she says.
Carbs at night, never get light.
No need to sweat all starches. "It's not about the carbohydrate itself, but rather the type of carbohydrate. Aim for fiber-rich complex carbohydrates like brown rice, sweet potatoes, or quinoa in the evening—and any time of day—for more filling fiber and nutrients, Coale says. Eating three servings of whole grains per day has been proven to reduce your risk for heart disease. Whenever possible, skip the white carbs like candy, processed cereals, and white bread.
Fruit has so much sugar, it's basically candy.
Yes, fruit has sugar. But it also has a ton of nutrients and fiber. Plus, vitamin C-rich fruits such as oranges, kiwi, strawberries, papaya, and pineapple can help speed up fat metabolism, according to the Journal of the American College of Nutrition. Coale is a fan of organic fruit for a fast pre-workout snack. Skip the juice, when possible, and leave the skin on for a fiber boost that blunts the blood sugar rise that can come after consuming the natural sugars, Coale suggests.