Johnís ďcommon manĒ approach, which strikes a chord with many overweight Americans, was honed during his 10-year career in the weight loss industry. As Mr. Bad Food, he warns you of fast food, restaurant and supermarket landmines.

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Weekly Diet News Digest

by John McGran, Columnist
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Just because you are watching your weight doesn't mean you have to say farewell to the occasional sweet treat -- especially when your treat weighs in at 50 calorie or less!

Sink your teeth into these simple, yet satisfying snacks:

1. Frozen fruit Bars! They're a healthy alternative to the sugary Popsicle. Several companies put out bars made of fruit juice and/or fruit pulp without added sugar. Check your grocer's freezer.

2. Cinnamon Sugar Popcorn! Make four cups of popcorn and put it in a bowl. Add three packets of Splenda or Equal, one teaspoon of cinnamon, one tablespoon of light brown sugar, and one melted tablespoon of a zero-calorie butter substitute. Mix it all up and you have four servings of one delicious snack -- perfect for sharing with family or friends.

3. Root Beer Float! Fill a tumbler about three quarters of the way with diet root beer, then drop in a quarter cup of light vanilla ice cream. It tastes darn close to the "real thing!"

4. Eight Large Strawberries! If unadulterated strawberries aren't sweet enough for you, cut it back to five, and cover them with two teaspoons of confectioner's sugar. Either way, you're looking at only around 45 to 49 calories.

5. Jelly Toast! It's not just for breakfast anymore! Toast a slice of whole grain bread and coat with that zero-cal butter substitute. Spread a teaspoon of your favorite jam or jelly on it.

6. Gelatin! There's always room for gelatin... pick a flavor, any flavor. It's surprisingly filling, and only about 10 to 40 calories, depending on the brand.

7. A Medium-Sized Peach! We're talking around 38 calories, plus you get some fiber and vitamins. And here's a great little variation to just eating it: cut the peach in half and grill it. You'll caramelize the natural sugars, and it tastes great.

8. Five Maraschino Cherries! Give the sundaes to the kids and keep the cherries for yourself. They're a savory sweet special treat.

9. Pudding! Get a sugar-free, fat-free pudding mix, and make it with skim milk. You can add a little Splenda if you want it sweeter.

10. Two Large Marshmallows! If you want to scorch 'em with a lighter and pretend you're camping, go right ahead. Or eat just one coated with chocolate syrup.

11. Watermelon! One cup of sweet watermelon chunks equals 50 calories, not counting the seeds.

BONUS TREAT: A Medium-Sized Tomato! Slice it up and sprinkle lightly with your favorite seasoning. Refreshing and delicious... and just 35 calories.


@ 6:39pm ET on July 27, 2008
One non fat yogurt with fiber suplements

@ 11:23am ET on January 16, 2012
Thanks. Very helpful since I am having a problem controlling my sweet tooth.

@ 2:24pm ET on January 18, 2012
I'm a salty snacker.....I'm a chip addict!!
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