It may surprise you, but I’m here to tell you that you CAN eat chips when you’re trying to lose weight. So here are a few key considerations for how to choose the best chips for weight loss.
While I do want you to include chips in your meals if you love chips, remember that not all chips are the same. So here are key things to look for on the bag, why some choices are better than others, and what to pair chips with for a balanced snack. Follow my dietitian tips to choose the best chips for weight loss.
How Many Calories are in Chips?
So you no longer have to imagine life without them. Instead, follow these key tips to choose the best chips for weight loss.
When you’re standing in the chip aisle at the grocery store, how do you know which one to choose? The bags may all have around the same calories per serving, somewhere between 130-170. But some provide more nutrition benefits than others.
3 Tips to Choose the Best Chips for Weight Loss
This is where I come in. I have a few key tips for you to remember when choosing a bag to dive into to stay on track with your weight loss goals.
1. Pay Attention to the Type of Chip
There are potato chips, whole grain chips, bean chips, vegetable chips, and more. Some have additional nutrients such as fiber and protein that can fill you up more than others.
Or for example, choosing purple corn chips provides an extra benefit of the anthocyanins from the purple corn.
2. Pay Attention to the Number of Ingredients
The fewer ingredients, the better. Some will only have 3 ingredients such as these potato chips with potatoes, oil, and salt.
But other brands can have over 15 ingredients. Many of which I don’t even know how to pronounce! This is to add flavor and preserve the crunchiness of the chip. It also can leave an aftertaste making you want to go back for more and more. Not a good thing when you’re trying to lose weight.
3. Look for Chips that are Oven-Baked
Choosing oven-baked chips means they weren’t fried in oil. This decreases the fat content and calories from added oil.
My Recommendations for Best Chips for Weight Loss
So for some comparisons, I have a few brands here to show you:
- Sun Chips – These are whole grain chips and are oven-baked
- Beanitos – These are bean-based, which provides fiber and protein
- Tera Vegetable Chips – These are made from a mix of vegetables, providing phytonutrients and fiber
- Tortilla Chips – Corn is a whole grain. Choose purple corn chips for anthocyanins.
How Many Chips to Eat
Now when it comes time to enjoy these chips, do not eat from the bag. Take them out. The suggested serving size won’t fill you up by itself. And two servings can easily add up to 300 calories. So I recommend eating the serving size of chips, perhaps a few extra, then pairing them with some of the ideas below.
What to Eat With Chips for Weight Loss
So instead, take your serving and eat the chips with something else like string cheese, a hard-boiled egg, salad, or even salsa or guacamole. Here are a few snack examples:
- Chips and salsa. The salsa can fill you up and also provides fiber. Plus, salsa is made out of tomatoes, so it’s a great way to add in a fruit/vegetable source.
- Chips and chicken soup. Enjoy this as a mid afternoon snack to your chicken soup (chicken soup can be store bought). The soup will provide protein for a more balanced snack, and you can crush the chips on top of the soup for a nice crunch.
- Nachos. I made these with quinoa chips with seeds (flax and chia) and blue corn chips for fiber. Use 20 chips total as the base, then added 1/4 -1/2 cup black beans, and 1 oz of shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese. Heat in the oven until the cheese is melted.
Hopefully now you have a better idea of how to choose the best chip for weight loss. For more individualized guidance for weight loss, take a look at my 4-month weight loss program that is tailored to you.