One rule you can realistically standby is to make sure the FIRST ingredient in the product you are considering is WHOLE GRAIN. Stock your pantry with pasta, bread & pastries made with whole grains as first ingredient, switch from potato chips to whole grain corn tortilla chips & whole grain crackers.
Sweeten with a few drops maple syrup, jam or molasses, use small Tupperware container if you are on the go. You will be WAY more in control of your calories and yogurt can be used for creamy salad dressings, dipping sauces, smoothies, and baking. Plain yogurt is a staple pantry ingredient.
If it’s not easy…it won’t work. Wash and de-sticker fruit supply for the week and keep in a bowl by the front door…grab 3 pieces a day. Wash and (no need to peel) cut up carrots, celery, cucumber, peppers, broccoli or snap peas, store in sandwich baggies so they are ready to go when it’s time to fly out the door.
The key to a great smoothie is frozen fruit. Keep a store of bananas, berries, apples, pears, peaches, grapes…whatever is in season and a good price. Wash, cut and freeze in freezer bags…don’t worry about the fruit sticking together…just give it a good bang on the counter and the fruit will break loose.
Stock low-fat vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt and your favorite additions like nuts, chocolate chips, crumbled cookies, frozen fruit, dried fruit…you get the idea. Let ice-cream soften and scoop ½ C onto cutting board and mix in your goodies. I use a small coffee cup or ramekin so I don’t serve myself TOO much! The point is you are in control and there is an average of 30-40% less calories if you do it yourself and control the calories!