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Healthy Sandwiches Are Worthwhile Meals

By Paul Rothbart

The sandwich, perhaps the most common food item in America. Named after the 4th Earl of Sandwich, who it is said was so involved in playing cribbage that he wouldn't leave the table for a meal. As an avid poker player, I can relate. Instead, the Earl had his servants bring him meat between slices of bread. His convenient meal has evolved into an entire cuisine, hot and cold, loaded with all kinds of meats, vegetables, and condiments, the sandwich is a lunchtime staple and an occasional dinner. Sandwiches tend to be a pleasure food, but that doesn't mean it can't be good for you. Here are some healthy sandwich ingredients.

The Bread

Breads are heavy in carbs and calories and refined flour is not the best thing for you. Whole grain breads are high in fiber and provide more nutrients. Wraps have become very popular and are a lower calorie and delicious option. There are whole grain wraps, as well as those flavored with garlic, tomato, or various herbs. Another healthy bread substitute is the pita. A convenient pocket to tuck fillings into, pitas also have fewer calories than bread while supplying nutrition. For an extremely healthy sandwich container, try a lettuce wrap. 

The Fillings

Deli meats and cheese are traditional sandwich fillings, but many are heavy in calories and fat. Choose lean meats that are heavy in protein like turkey or chicken. Salmon makes a very tasty sandwich that has the benefit of omega-3 fatty acids. Healthy cheese choices include mozzarella, goat cheese, or brie. These have great nutrition with fewer calories and the soft ones are spreadable. Hummus is another spreadable filling that makes a tasty sandwich. Made from chickpeas, hummus is very nutritious. Vegetables are also common fillings. Lettuces, tomatoes, and avocados are very good for health and add flavor and texture.

Condiments

Try to avoid mayonnaise. It's very high in fat with little nutritional value. Mustard is a low calorie choice that comes in a variety of flavors with some very healthy components. Pesto adds a wonderful flavor and has few calories. For a little spice, salsa is a great condiment to add to a sandwich. Two tablespoons only has 10 calories, which makes it a far better choice than condiments like ranch dressing. Get creative. There are almost no limits when it comes to sandwiches.

For a quick and convenient meal, it's hard to beat a sandwich. There is a reason they are so popular. There are so many ingredients that can be used in sandwich making. By choosing the healthy ones, you can enjoy a delicious, fast, and guilt-free meal. 

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Shorewood, Ill.

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