You don’t have to eliminate certain foods in your diet. Yes, things like fried foods are generally just not good for you, but there are some foods you may think you can’t eat while dieting that you can actually enjoy in moderation. The question isn’t whether you can have it – it’s how much you can have. So dig in!

1. Cheese

Yes, most cheeses are fatty and salty, but they are a great source of calcium. For full flavor (you’ll eat less), stick to a sharp cheddar. You’ll only need about an ounce and you’ll be able to taste the cheese and be satisfied. If you are wanting a lower calorie option, stick to goat or feta cheese – just don’t indulge too much!

2. Nuts

A lot of people give nuts a bad name, but they are actually great for you (in small quantities, of course). Nuts actually contain healthy fats. Try only having about 30 or less per serving, as the calories will add up.

3. Olive Oil

Yes, it can be high in calories, but olive oil has a high monosaturated fat content, which keeps you feeling full and satisfied for longer. A tablespoon is all you really need, so add it to your salad dressings or just drizzle on top of some of your foods.

4. Egg Yolks

Ditch the egg-white omelet. Egg whites only have 4g of protein, whereas an entire egg has 6g of protein. Besides, the yolks are the best part, right? So it’s time to get crackin’.

5. Bananas

A great addition to your diet. These sweet and dense fruits are high in calories (so you must have them in moderation), but they do contain fiber and potassium, which is great for your overall well-being.

6. Pasta and Bread

Yup, you read that right! People tend to overindulge when it comes to eating these delicious carbohydrates simply because they taste so darn good. And let’s face it – they both make for great comfort food options. Having one cup of pasta on a regular basis is okay. Try sticking to whole grain pasta as the proteins and fibers in the grains will help you stay fuller for longer.

7. Potatoes

Potatoes have been a suppertime staple for years – and back in the day it used to be one veggie that was cheap and kept families full. The key is MODERATION! Potatoes have a high glycemic index, which can spike your blood sugar (which we don’t want), but try adding a little butter (the real stuff) or Greek yogurt to your potato. Both Greek yogurt and butter contain fat, so you’ll slow your body’s absorption of the carbohydrates.

8. Avocado

Buttery and versatile. This fruit is high in monounsaturated fat, which can help ward off cravings for hours to come. Yes, avocados are high in calories, but just keep your portions in check – a little goes along way. We suggest using half throughout the day or adding it to your breakfast, so you’ll burn off the excess calories early.

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