Are Sandwiches Healthy? How To Cut Sandwich Calories

For decades the sandwich was portrayed as a quick and healthy choice that our parents would pack our lunch with, but are sandwiches actually healthy?

FirstQuote Health Staff
Published on
April 30, 2020
Last Updated on
December 19, 2023
An example of a health sandwich

I bet you have never asked yourself if sandwiches are healthy, and it’s not your fault. For decades the sandwich was portrayed as the quick and healthy choice, our parents would pack our lunch with them, include it on road trips, and everything in between. I could eat a sandwich every day if I could, but those pesky calories keep me at bay.

Typical Calories From Sandwiches

Recently the CDC concluded that when people ate a sandwich over another meal, the caloric intake was almost 100 calories more including an excess of sodium, fat, and sugars. With all this said, let’s get down to it, here are some ways to cut sandwich calories, from sandwich toppings to alternative bread, let’s help you come up with your own healthy sandwich recipes.

How to Cut Sandwich Calories

So, how can two pieces of bread and some turkey and cheese do so much harm? It really boils down to the sandwich toppings of your choosing, as we know not all sandwiches are created equal, some prefer turkey others prefer baloney etc. The fact is that we have to be very careful about the ingredients we add. We live in a great time for options, as a child I remember not having more than three choices of bread and turkey, today there are supermarkets dedicated solely on bringing in the healthies options for consumers. Next, in this article, we will dive deeper into each ingredient and which to choose.

Healthy Sandwich Meats

The best advice we can give is to go lean, lean and lean! Many times this choice can make or break a healthy sandwich so choosing the right kind of protein is critical. First, choose fresh slices instead of preserved cold cuts that usually are the perpetrators of the high sodium and fats. Second, choosing the right choice of meat is paramount for healthy sandwich ideas.

Healthy Sandwich Toppings

Avoid meats with inserted toppings such as bacon or other fatty substances, instead, opt for a more natural 100% meat such as chicken, fish, or turkey and maybe even tuna if that’s your thing. Here’s a bonus for you, limit the number of slices you place on your bread, normally a product’s nutrient label should give you some guidance on the number of calories per serving. Other healthy toppings to add some crunch are vegetables such as lettuce, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, roasted peppers, shredded carrots and more.

Healthy Sandwich Condiments

Sometimes the culprit may not be the proteins, instead, that title goes to the condiments we choose to place on our sandwich. But how? Aren’t most condiments just what they say they are, mayonnaise, mustard, pretty simple huh? Unfortunately, many of these condiments producers pack their products with high fats and sugars to increase the end flavor, instead opt for a low-fat version of mayonnaise or mustard. If that’s out of the question and we get it sometimes low-fat equals dull tastes, we also recommend condiments such as fresh avocados or hummus to add that moisture texture to any sandwich ideas you may have already.

Healthy Sandwich Recipes

We could not leave you without some amazing and healthy recipes for you to make at home for your family and friends. Next time you need a fast meal, we suggest preparing this delicious and healthy Tuna, Avocado, and Pickled Onion Sandwich. We cannot stress this enough, there are bad and good fats, as you can recall we mentioned avocado as a substitute for the typical condiments and that is because it’s a source of good fat, in addition, ingredients such as tuna hold essential omega-3 fatty acids that aid with your brain function. All you need for this sandwich is the following:

  • thinly sliced red onion
  • whole-wheat sourdough bread slices, toasted
  • fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 2 ripe peeled avocados, sliced
  • can albacore tuna

Sandwich Health Benefits

Sandwiches are delicious and we don’t want you to stop eating them, however, the way you choose in creating your sandwich can really affect your health and productivity. Choosing the wrong topics can leave you sluggish and with extra calories in you while good ingredients will boost your brain power and energize you. A quick look into what you’re consuming is all it takes to make a change for the better, simply removing a couple of slices of that meat or adding some veggies can make a world of difference. We hope we could help you find the best options for you, now go make a delicious and healthy sandwich.

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