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Tasty Low-Calorie Foods

Overview

While low-cal foods might not pack the addictive punch of fattier fare, they offer bursts of flavor, along with nutritional value, and fit well into your diet. Because they're low in calories, they'll fit well into a calorie-controlled diet and keep you from feeling ravenous between meals. Select your low-calorie options from whole, unprocessed foods -- they tend to be healthier than highly-processed low cal snacks loaded with artificial sweeteners.

Protein Foods

Have chicken for a tasty low-calorie food, but if you think chicken breast meat is bland and boring, rub some lemon pepper into it before grilling it, or pour a tablespoon of teriyaki sauce over it. One medium size chicken breast totals about 140 calories. Lemon pepper contains approximately 8 calories per teaspoon. Teriyaki sauce contains 15 calories per tablespoon. Savor the flavor of shrimp if you prefer fish to meat. Shrimp that is grilled, steamed or boiled tastes great with nothing on it, but if you like more flavor, eat your shrimp with cocktail sauce on it, or grill it with garlic. One 4-ounce portion of shrimp amounts to approximately 154 calories, cocktail sauce contains about 15 calories per tablespoon, and four cloves of garlic has about 17 calories. Eat yogurt if you want a healthy food, or snack, that will not add inches to your figure. Fat-free yogurt that contains no sugar comes in a variety of flavors and is approximately 97 calories per cup.

Vegetables

Mix a medley of lettuces, such as romaine, iceberg and red leaf, for a salad bursting with flavor when tossed together with some garlic powder, some dried oregano and/or parsley, oil and vinegar. One cup of lettuce contains approximately 11 to 15 calories, and the garlic powder and herbs have no significant calorie content. Oil contains about 120 calories per tablespoon, and vinegar contains about 2 calories per tablespoon. Steam carrots, which contain about 25 calories, and add some fresh dill and melted light butter to them for another tasty low-calorie food. One teaspoon of light butter contains about 25 calories.

Fruit

Make your own fruit salad for a tasty treat. Cut up fresh ripe banana and put fresh strawberries, blueberries and oranges in a bowl. One quarter-cup of bananas contains about 26 calories, quarter-cup of strawberries contains approximately 12 calories, ¼ cup of blueberries contains about 20 calories, and quarter-cup cup of oranges contains about 15 calories. Eat berries with a light whipped desert topping. Have a half-cup of watermelon, which is a mere 23 calories; a half-cup of honeydew, which contains about 32 calories; or a half-cup of cantaloupe, which contains about 30 calories. Purchase all fresh fruits when they are ripe and in season as this is when they taste their best.

Photo Credits:

  • watermelon slices image by William Berry from Fotolia.com

This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.