Avoid the snack traps

Don’t let marketing gimmicks entice you into choosing snacks that don’t offer nutritional value. Take 100-calorie packs, for instance, says Mark McKinney, senior executive chef,The University of Tennessee Medical Center. “I think people get this idea that it’s only 100 calories, but 100 calories of what?”

Put your 100 calories to nutritious foods, such as a slice of reduced-fat cheese, a small carton of plain fat-free yogurt or a piece of fruit, not a handful of candy.

Liquid snacks can be a problem as well,

“Big fancy coffees, smoothies.You’re investing a lot of calories,” says Mary Ellen Camire, food science and nutrition professor.

To quench your thirst, try water and a slice of lemon, Camire says.

You can control the calories in smoothies if you make your own with yogurt and fresh fruit, says McKinney, who is part of a team providing healthful cooking classes at the medical center.