How to Make Healthy Food Choices When Eating At a Deli

You might have been on a health kick at the beginning of the New Year, packing your lunches from home every day and hitting the gym regularly. But for most of us, paying more attention to diet and fitness gets harder as we move further away from our New Year’s resolutions. When it’s lunchtime at the office and your stomach is growling, the easiest thing is to hit the corner deli long island ny and get a sandwich or a snack. This behavior in itself isn’t problematic. However, going to the corner deli can result in making a few unhealthy decisions, especially if you’re reacting from hunger. If you’re at work and need to eat something right away, there’s no need to reach for a fattening sub or bag of chips. Here are a few tips for making better, more health-conscious choices at your neighborhood deli counter.

Get a Salad

Even though the deli is known for sandwiches, there are no laws that say you have to get a sub and a bag of chips every day. Instead, opt for a salad with green and red lettuce, tomatoes, and onions, plus whatever extra vegetable toppings you want. If you build a salad with enough extra protein by adding chickpeas, tofu, and sliced grilled chicken, you’ll be getting the same filling lunch without all the extra carbs and fat. As long as you stick to veggies and protein, you’ll be building a healthy meal that won’t leave your stomach growling in a couple of hours. The only thing to watch out for is packing on too much salad dressing or extras without any nutritional value, such as croutons. Even two tablespoons of a cream-based dressing like Ranch or Thousand Island can end up being an extra 200 calories on your plate. If you’re focused on keeping your cholesterol low, make sure you’re not going for a ton of heavy cream-based pasta salads, dressings, or dairy toppings on your meal.

Stay Away from Processed Meats

While it might be tempting to add a ton of sliced or chopped meats to your salad to bulk it up, there are a few protein types you definitely want to stay away from. Processed meats like bologna, mortadella, and salami come with a high-fat content that cancels out their nutritional value. The same thing goes for processed cheese like American cheese or shredded cheddar. If you need extra protein on your salad, go for grilled tofu slices or grilled chicken slices to keep you feeling full. Additionally, adding chicken or tuna salad might seem like a great way to make your meal feel more filling. However, the mayo content in most pasta salads or tuna salads is enough to load up your salad with a ton of needless calories. If your deli offers mayo-less chicken or tuna salad, feel free to add it on. Otherwise, keep away from anything that’s packed with tons of mayo, salt, or extra dressing.

Pack on the Veggies

Whether you’re building a giant salad or a heart-healthy sandwich, piling on veggies will help you create a more flavorful, varied meal. Getting the same boring salad every day can get tiring very fast, and it won’t be long before you find yourself craving the same the meatball sub or slice of pizza. However, when you figure out a ton of different combinations to use for your salads using a huge array of vegetables, seeds, and protein options, you’ll never get bored of your meal. If you’re feeling like something a bit sweeter, add some sliced fruit to your salad to create a salty-sweet sensation. If you want a grain-packed salad, pile on different seeds and nuts like hazelnuts, toasted almonds, and pumpkin seeds.

Snack Smarter

Eating healthy isn’t just about focusing on the big meals. If you know how to cut down on snacking in between breakfast, lunch, and dinner, you’ll find it a lot easier to stick to a healthy diet. However, snacking can be a great way to create healthier habits while experiencing cravings. If you tend to go for the same bag of chips every day, don’t try to instantly switch to buying roasted veggies off the bat. Try to ease yourself into picking healthier options by switching to no-salt-added popcorn, and slowly try to diversify your snacking habits by opting for raw nuts, dried fruit, and fresh veggies. Get into the habit of checking the nutritional facts on each snack not just to check fat content, but to keep track of your sodium and sugar intake.

 

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