Sometimes you just can't make it into the kitchen to cook. Dr. Gourmet has reviewed over 800 common convenience foods, ingredients, and restaurant selections so that you know what's worth eating - and what's not. View the Index of all Dr. Gourmet's Food Reviews
Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP has counseled thousands of his patients on healthy, sustainable weight loss. Now he's compiled his best tips and recipes into a six-week plan for you to learn how to eat great food that just happens to be great for you - and if losing weight is your goal, you can do that, too.
Get the prescription for better health as well as healthy weight loss, including:
When I am giving talks I beat up on fast food a fair amount. It's expensive, not so fast and there really aren't any redeeming nutritional choices out there (yes, even Subway is pretty bad for you, with only one or two choices being close to healthy).
But people need something for lunch at work and sometimes you don't have leftovers to take or time to make a sandwich. You can keep frozen meals in the refrigerator at work, but people always tell me that they have a tendency to disappear (sad, but true). There are some shelf stable choices and we have reviewed a few, but most don't offer a complete meal, have too much salt or are too expensive.
Enter Fig Food soups. I noticed these on the shelf at Whole Foods and they were appealing because they come in a microwavable pouch, they are about 350 to 400 calories for the whole bag, are low in salt, and high in fiber. They were priced at $3.99 for each pouch, and while that is pricy, it is still cheaper than fast food.
We started with their Yucatan Black Bean soup. This is nicely spiced: not too overpowering. There is a great thick black bean soup base with chunks of Yukon gold potatoes and the flavor is not too salty. The soup has a lot of body, and with 12 grams of fiber in the "two servings" that come in a pouch, this is more than enough to carry you through the afternoon into dinner. There's 250 mg of sodium in each serving (500 mg for the pouch). This is a great soup and was a really good start for our tasting panel.
The Mexican Bean and Rice is also good (but not quite as good as the Yucatan Black Bean). There is a subtle taste of chipotle and, again, enough salt for great flavor. The pinto and black beans are creamy and the brown rice adds great texture. There's lots of garlic flavor and spinach adds a slight bitterness. The numbers are also great at only 320 calories for the pouch, 10 grams of fiber and 460 mg of sodium.
Stop eating fast food and keep a couple of these soups in your desk drawer for emergencies. You will be so much happier with the taste of these than any fast food you can find.