Add this ingredient to your lunch to help you shed pounds

Published on December 01 2009 - 3:50 PM
Curried Chicken Pitas

My husband and I are fairly active people, but we’re always looking for more ways to shed a few pounds. (Who isn’t, right?) So when I read that adding more fiber to your diet can help you lose weight, I started to think about where I could sneak in some extra fiber during the day.

Fiber at breakfast and dinner is something we already get a healthy amount of, so lunch seemed like a good place to experiment with new ideas.

Especially when I realized I could turn some leftover dinner ingredients into high-fiber, healthy lunches.

Here are 4 healthy – and easy – and lunch ideas that can help you pack more fiber into your daily routine:


Soups

• One of my favorite quick lunch solutions is to make a big pot of soup over the weekend. Homemade soup tastes a lot better than canned and I can control what goes in it. One of my cold-weather favorites is Cumin-Scented Wheat Berry-Lentil Soup, packed with heart-healthy, fiber-rich wheat berries and lentils.

We eat some for dinner, then I freeze the leftovers in individual containers. That way, it won’t go bad before I use it, and I can just grab a container from the freezer when I’m making my lunch.

Salads

Rice & Lentil Salad—Turn leftover cooked brown rice into a simple salad with canned cooked lentils and a delicious sherry vinaigrette.

Mediterranean Tuna Antipasto Salad—Packed with protein and fiber, this tuna and bean salad is ready in a flash. Serve with warm, crusty bread or pack it in a pita for a sandwich. For an extra kick, add a pinch of crushed red pepper or cayenne.

Sandwiches

Curried Chicken Pita—Roasting a chicken for dinner is a pretty easy meal, and I always turn leftover meat into chicken salad. I like the sweet touch that cranberries and pear add to this tangy curried chicken salad. Toasted sliced almonds add a nutty crunch.

A graduate of New England Culinary Institute and University of Wisconsin with a degree in journalism, Carolyn pairs her long-standing love for food with writing as EatingWell's senior food editor. Carolyn’s culinary interest is rooted in her childhood; she grew up making thousands of Christmas cookies every year with her mom and picking leaves off bunches of parsley to make tabbouleh with her dad. Away from the kitchen, Carolyn enjoys seeking out rare craft beers and exploring the outdoors with her husband, 2-year-old daughter and dog.