Mmm… breakfast sandwiches. Anyone who grew up in the era of fast food will likely associate these tasty, gender-defying sammies with mornings passing through the drive-thru queue at your favorite restaurant chain. Personally, I can confirm that there were plenty of Egg McMuffin pit stops on my daily commute to high school – and a few more since then as well.
Now that I’m a nutritionist, I know that these commercially prepared foods tend to be high in fat, calories, sodium, and artificial ingredients. If you are trying to lose weight, you may have reduced your weight. But I can also attest that making your own breakfast sandwiches can actually be a great way to start your day on a healthy note. The right, nutrient-dense ingredients like whole grains, lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables all belong on a weight-loss-friendly breakfast table…or in the passenger seat.
Here are five delicious combos that will get you out of bed and help you move the number on the scale. Then, for tastier meal combos, check out our list of the best plate dinner combos for faster weight loss, says the nutritionist.
In a world of thousands of food choices, picking the right one can make your head spin. But I believe you can’t go wrong with the Mediterranean diet – and US News and World Report agrees, ranking it as the best overall diet for four consecutive years. A Mediterranean-style diet filled with fruits and vegetables, legumes, whole grains, and plenty of olive oil has been shown to reduce systemic inflammation, improve heart health, and promote weight loss. . How about immersing yourself in the delights of the sun with a Mediterranean-themed breakfast sandwich?
How to do it: Cook an egg in a teaspoon of olive oil until it is too hard, then sprinkle with a tablespoon of crumbled feta cheese and let it sit in the pan until the cheese begins to melt. Layer on a thin whole wheat sandwich (I’m a fan of Oroweat’s 100% whole wheat variety) and cover with sun-dried tomatoes in oil, a handful of fresh spinach and a leaf or two of fresh basil.
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While we’re talking about food trends, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention keto, another very popular choice for weight loss. Although a keto diet has its downsides (like those found in this recent study), it can be an effective way to lose weight fast. This is because when you gear your macronutrients heavily towards fat and away from carbs, the body enters the metabolic state of ketosis, which burns fat for fuel.
If you’re on keto to lose weight, you can make a breakfast bargain of healthy fats and minimal carbs with a simple smoked salmon wrap. (It may not be a sandwich per se, but I call it pretty close!)
How to do it: Mix two diced green onions and a quarter teaspoon of garlic powder into two tablespoons of whole cream cheese. Spread this DIY schmear on a low carb whole wheat tortilla. Then fill with smoked salmon—Sea Bear Ready-to-Eat Smoked King Salmon Pockets are a convenient choice and top with alfalfa sprouts. Wrap it all up and have fun!
Avocado toast is what the cool kids eat for breakfast. (Or at least that was a few years ago? I can’t keep up.) Put a new spin on this trendy brunch staple by adding hummus and a hard-boiled egg to the mix.
How to do it: Start by toasting two pieces of whole-wheat bread for a boost of satiating complex carbs, then spread them with creamy hummus for a little protein and even more fiber. Top with a few slices of ripe avocado with monounsaturated fats (i.e. the good ones) and a sliced hard-boiled egg. No matter what your morning throws at you, this combo should keep you full until lunch.
Not all breakfast sandwiches are salty! Keep it sweeter with this delicious frozen berry waffle option.
Surprised that a nutritionist gives you the green light for frozen waffles? This is because they are not all created equal. Nature’s Path Flax Plus Waffles, for example, not only contain 5 grams of fiber per serving, but they also contain ALA omega-3 fatty acids from flax seeds. One systemic review and meta-analysis found that obese or overweight people who added flaxseed to their diet experienced significant weight reduction. Meanwhile, at just 100 calories and two grams of added sugar per waffle, this organic choice is definitely weight loss friendly.
How to do it: Make this sweet start to the day by toasting two flax whole wheat waffles, spreading them with a layer of Greek yogurt and stacking them with sliced fresh strawberries in the middle.
Eggs are a great source of protein in breakfast sandwiches, but if you’ve eliminated animal products as part of a weight loss plan, you’re not without options. Extra-firm tofu makes an egg-like sammie centerpiece that’s high in protein and even contains a bit of fiber.
How to do it: Create a hearty vegan breakfast by sprinkling a thick slice of extra-firm pressed tofu with nutritional yeast, salt and pepper, then frying it for about five minutes on each side. Slide off the griddle and onto a toasted whole wheat English muffin spread with a tablespoon of the pre-made pesto. Layer on a few slices of fresh tomatoes and a handful of arugula and dig in.
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