Volumetrics is an eating plan championed by Barbara Rolls of Penn State University, and it's based on getting more mileage out of low-density foods. For example, a huge salad—or in this case, nearly 4 cups of popcorn—will leave you more satisfied than a square of chocolate, and for far fewer calories. If you're someone who gets depressed by measly portions, reach for healthy snacks that have a high water content like fruits, veggies—or our favorite crunchy munchie: popcorn. For a pre-popped variety, we love SkinnyPop because it's free of additives and tasty without being too salty.
Oh man, it’s already worth making baked pears just because of how great the kitchen smells when you shove them in the oven. They’re so easily prepared too: Slice a pear in half, scoop out the pit with a spoon. Now add a couple of walnuts, sprinkle cinnamon over them and drizzle maple syrup or honey (for non-vegans) on top. Off they go in the oven for about 25 minutes on 380°F/180°C.
Who doesn’t love a good snack? They’re essential for staving off hunger between meals and keeping you fueled from your early morning workout until your late night dinner with friends. But small bites can also be a nutritional trap, providing few nutrients and tons of unnecessary calories. A 2012 study examining the diets of nearly 5,000 adults found that almost a third of their daily calorie intake was from “empty,” or nutritionally void, snack calories.
Protein: Studies show that women are less likely to munch mindlessly when they include protein in meals and snacks. For reasons not entirely understood, protein makes your belly feel full longer, and research suggests you're less likely to crave treats when you're satisfied. We've designed the diet to give you extra protein in simple forms — like a hardcooked egg or nuts — throughout the day.
Eating a snack between meals helps curb your hunger so that you don't inhale your dinner when you finally sit down to eat a meal. Snacking can also help you get in all the nutrients you need. On the flip side, grazing all day-particularly on foods with little nutritional value-may result in eating too much. It's a great idea to shop for snacks at the grocery store and pack them for work so you are prepared when hunger strikes. Many of these are also great on-the-go snack options.

Yogurt is and shall remain an important component in our snacking culture. And I’m not speaking of those over-sugared versions, but of proper plain natural yogurt. Make a craft out of it. You won’t believe how many different, almost artisan creations you can come up with. The ingredients of the version above are grapes, walnuts, some cinnamon and a few sprinkles of maple syrup. Love it! Up for more ideas? Have a look over here.


As a Web exclusive, we've included a bonus weekend plan so you can indulge (a little!) without sabotaging your success. The menus for Saturday and Sunday include fewer snacks to make way for a treat, whether it's a fast-food fix or glass of wine with dinner. Feel free to swap snack for snack during the week; on weekends, only the snacks that don't constitute breakfast, lunch, or dinner are interchangeable. Follow the plan for a month and you could lose up to eight pounds. Now, that's our idea of a treat.
It's easy to see why pistachios ranked as one of the best nuts for weight loss, they've helped countless Biggest Loser contestants trim down. "We keep pistachios in ample supply at the ranch, says Biggest Loser dietitian Cheryl Forberg, RD. "Not only are they a satisfying, heart-healthy snack, they also aid weight loss. Studies suggest having to manually remove the shell helps people eat more mindfully and slows the rate at which they nosh, helping to reduce portion size and calorie intake, she explains"
That is, until it's snack time—then, if you're on the keto diet, your'e basically SOL (unless, you know, you like having an entire steak for a snack). Think about it: All the best snacks are off limits on the keto diet (damn that fickle 70 percent fat, 25 percent protein, 5 percent carbs ratio). Granola bars, crackers, cookies—all off-limits on a keto diet.

"When I'm looking to get a little leaner, I reach for raw flax crackers topped with avocado. I prefer raw flax crackers over the wheat variety because they don't contain gluten, which can make me a little puffy. They are also intensely rich in omega-3s, which helps produce radiant skin and a faster brain!" — Dana James, nutritionist and founder of Food Coach NYC


Protein: Studies show that women are less likely to munch mindlessly when they include protein in meals and snacks. For reasons not entirely understood, protein makes your belly feel full longer, and research suggests you're less likely to crave treats when you're satisfied. We've designed the diet to give you extra protein in simple forms — like a hardcooked egg or nuts — throughout the day.
Quesadillas without cheese may seem like a contradiction in terms, but they are indeed a thing in Mexico—and, more to the point, they can be delicious. Here, we mix mashed leftover sweet potato with cilantro, scallions, and pickled jalapeños (though you can sub whatever other quesadilla fillings strike your fancy); spread it over half of a flour tortilla; fold it; and cook it in plenty of oil, just as we recommend in our basic quesadilla guide.
Sure it's low-cal and low-carb, but a cup of this sweet orange melon also provides more than a hundred percent of the day's vitamin A. This fat-soluble nutrient helps maintain eye and skin health in addition to boosting immune function. Although cantaloupe tastes great on its own, it also pairs well with cottage cheese, another item that made this list!
They're mini health packets. Fresh herbs are calorie-free and loaded with antioxidants and other healthy ingredients. Basil and mint contain compounds that are potential cancer fighters; rosemary may help fight memory loss; and cilantro appears to slow the growth of certain bacteria that cause food-borne illness. Herbs are also a viable source of vitamins: 2 tablespoons of fresh basil, for example, delivers 27 percent of your recommended daily quotient of vitamin K, and just a handful of chives provides 10 percent of your daily requirement for vitamins A and C.

Americans love to snack almost as much as we want to lose weight. But according to research by the USDA, our snacking habits are adding too many calories and too few nutrients to our diets. It doesn't have to be this way, says Susan Bowerman, RD, assistant director of the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition. "When done right, (snacking) keeps your energy levels up and gives you more opportunities to get in all your nutritional needs."


But first, a bit of definition: "Free foods," in my opinion, are those that have 25 calories or less per reasonable serving. "Almost free foods" have 25 to 60 calories per reasonable serving. Portion control is key here. While 2 cups of popped, 94% fat-free microwave popcorn may contain only 40 calories, if you eat the entire bag you'll end up with closer to 200 calories -- definitely not an "almost free" food situation.

Chocolate-topped digestive biscuits from brands like McVitie's are great candidates for veganizing. Here, we rely on toasted sugar to provide depth of flavor in the absence of lactose, and use coconut oil to make a dairy-free dough that's easy to handle. A blend of all-purpose and whole wheat flour supplies the right combination of toasty flavor and crisp-yet-tender texture. Top with the high-quality vegan chocolate of your choice.


When fall comes around and you have more apples than you can reasonably eat out of hand, this recipe is here to help you preserve their flavor (especially if you freeze the applesauce for the off-season). Apple cider vinegar helps to brighten up the cooked fruit, while leaving the skins on the apples contributes flavor and color. Because roses belong to the same family as apples, a few drops of rosewater will help intensify the fruit's flavor. Try our apple compote, too, for an elegant (and quicker-cooking) dessert.
Popped like a corn kernel, amaranth offers a nutty flavor and a satisfying crunch with every bite. Even better: This unique ‘popcorn’ is packed with nutrients that make it more comparable to a leafy green than a grain (or a buttery, movie-theater treat). Just a quarter-cup of these seeds houses seven grams of protein and seven grams of fiber, making it the perfect snack for when you want to fill up fast. Photo and recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn
Studies show that peaches may help ward off metabolic syndrome — a name for a group of risk factors, of which belly fat is a predominant determinant, that increase the risk for obesity-related diseases including diabetes. The belly-good properties of stone fruits come from powerful phenolic compounds that can modulate fat gene expression. Better yet, fruits with pits are among the lowest in fructose or fruit sugar.
Fat cells fear fruit—especially watermelon. At less than 50 calories per cup and 90 percent water by weight, the summer staple is almost impossible to eat too much of. What's more, noshing on the juicy fruit has been shown to increase blood levels of L-arginine, an amino acid that's kryptonite for belly fat. One group of women who supplemented with L-arginine dropped an average of 6.5 pounds and two inches from their waists in just 12 weeks, according to a recent study. Add the fruit to your weekly lineup to reap the benefits, or pair it with one of these other best fruits for fat loss for a more filling snack.

A grapefruit a day in addition to your regular meals can speed weight loss. The fruit's acidity slows digestion, meaning it takes longer to move through your system, and you'll end up feeling fuller, and more satisfied, for longer. And the vitamin C-packed grapefruit works to lower cholesterol and decrease the risk of stroke, heart disease, and some types of cancer.
I love that you have so many bowls of things! Those are my favorite–and I’m really lazy, so I go across the street to Whole Foods and pick up cooked rice/other carby thing, pre-cut or steamed vegetables, some beans or tofu, and I’m set for lunch or dinner. Breakfast is another bowl–fruit, some homemade granola (or crumbled up cookies…) and Kite Hill yogurt.
If you need your snack to have real staying power, go for a combo of good protein and a little bit of fat. A homemade egg salad is a great choice. Chop up one whole egg and one egg white, then mix with a tablespoon of reduced-fat mayonnaise. The high-quality protein in the eggs will fuel your body for hours, while the fat helps slow digestion, so you'll feel full and energized longer.
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