Low calorie diets are perhaps one of, if not the most popular ways to lose weight. It makes sense- decrease the number of calories you eat and you’ll decrease the number on the scale. But eating less calories than you’re used to isn’t easy. Your body is accustomed to consuming a certain amount of food and calories, so cutting back on that amount can be a challenge when you’re starting out. To be successful on a low calorie diet, it’s crucial you fill your body with the right nourishing foods to sustain yourself throughout the day. Check out these packable lunches under 300 calories to keep you full and satisfied!
What is a Low Calorie Diet?
A low calorie diet is any diet that restricts your calorie intake to 1,000 to 1,500 per day. Cutting calories isn’t always easy and when you’re cutting down from what you’re used to, it’s important to make sure the 1,000 to 1,500 calories are nutrient-rich and fuelling for the body. Everything you eat needs to satisfy and nourish you in some way. It’s important you eat nutritious, filling foods like fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats. Cut back significantly on foods like refined carbs, sweetened beverages and rich, fatty foods like butter, cheese and fatty meats.
Getting enough protein and fibre is a good way to ensure you’ll stay satisfied throughout the day. It will also make you less likely to reach for sugary snacks between mealtimes. Fill up on foods that give you an increased feeling of fullness and can help curb cravings. Think: oats, Greek yogurt, soup, eggs, chia seeds, fish and lean meats like chicken and turkey.
When you’re starting off on a low calorie diet, you’ll have to keep track of how many calories you’re taking in at each meal. As you continue on the diet, this will become easier as you’ll start to recognize how much of certain foods you can eat, but until then, you can use a food scale to figure out how many calories certain foods have. You can also look for low calorie recipes, which should have the exact calorie count listed. You’ll also need to decide if you’ll eat three bigger meals or multiple smaller meals throughout the day.
Do Low Calorie Diets Work?
Absolutely! The more calories you eat, the more weight you put on, so flip that around and the less calories you eat, the more weight you’ll lose. Eating 1,000 to 1,5000 calories per day creates a calorie deficit and leads to weight loss. Just make sure not to take this to the extreme. Stick to the recommended calories per day, because any less can lead to decreased energy levels, nutrient deficiency and a lowered metabolism. It’s important you’re still getting enough fuel to get you through the day, without having to restrict yourself too much.
You can also add exercise to your regime if you want to lose weight faster, but be careful with this. Exercise is part of an overall healthy lifestyle, but if you’re cutting calories, exercising is going to make you even hungrier. This may lead you to go over your calorie count, causing you to ruin your diet. If you already exercise, continuing while cutting calories will be easier, but if you’re only adding exercise to your routine now, start off slow. Start with low intensity workouts such as yoga, swimming and walking. If you’re feeling okay after these workouts, you can begin more intense workouts as your body gets used to running on less calories.
30 Packable Lunches Under 300 Calories
1. Roasted Vegetable Couscous | Good to Know (280 calories)
2. Chicken Fried Rice | Pop Culture (290 calories)
3. Cod with Cucumber, Avocado and Mango Salsa Salad | BBC Good Food (272 calories)
4. Vegan Bolognese | Pop Sugar (257 calories)
5. Stir Fry Zucchini Noodles | Diethood (137 calories)
6. Sesame Beef and Asparagus Salad | Taste of Home
7. Sesame Shrimp with Smashed Cucumber Salad | Cooking Light (233 calories)
8. Coronation Chickpea and Apple Salad | Olive Magazine (223 calories)
9. Prawn and Squash Curry | Good to Know (291 calories)
10. Greek Chicken Salad Lettuce Cups | Pop Culture (233 calories)
11. Veggie Olive Wraps with Mustard Vinaigrette | BBC Good Food (281 calories)
12. Shrimp Egg Drop | Fitness Magazine (208 calories)
13. Vegetarian Linguine | Taste of Home (260 calories)
14. Overstuffed Veggie Sandwich | Skinny Ms. (242 calories)
15. Blueberry Corn Salad with Prosciutto | Recipe Girl (290 calories)
16. Shrimp Zucchini Pasta Puttanesca | Inspiraized (208 calories)
17. Southwestern Cobb Salad | Our Best Bites (293 calories)
18. Kung Pao Chicken Zoodles | Skinny Taste (277 calories)
19. Skinny Burrito in a Jar | Skinny Ms. (219 calories)
20. Pork Ragu with Polenta | Cooking Light (267 calories)
21. Kidney Bean Curry | BBC Good Food (282 calories)
22. Vegetarian Stir-Fried Tofu Noodles | Olive Magazine (275 calories)
23. 4-Ingredient Roasted Fish | Pop Sugar (160 calories)
24. Veggie and Pesto Sandwich | Skinny Ms. (260 calories)
25. Classic Tuna Salad | Pop Culture (85 calories)
26. Chicken, Mushroom and Bok Choy Bowl | Cooking Light (271 calories)
27. Sausage Topped White Pizza | Taste of Home (242 calories)
28. Mushroom and Tarragon Stroganoff | Olive Magazine
29. Japanese Broth with Udon Noodles | Good to Know (250 calories)
30. Carrot and Ginger Soup | BBC Good Food (293 calories)
Ready to try a low calorie diet? Cutting back on calories doesn’t mean you have to feel hungry and unsatisfied. These satisfying lunches under 300 calories will ensure you’re full and happy all day long!