Re-Think the Drink
When you sit down for a meal it's kind of automatic to expect to have something to drink at the same time. But really, you don't always need a drink when you eat.
First of all, what you definitely don't need to drink is soda, juice or any other fancy, calorie-loaded sweet drink. Not only do these add unnecessary calories to your meal, they often detract from the taste of the food.
Do you typically drink milk with meals?
It may be a good way to be sure you are taking in important nutrients, including calcium, but make sure that you're drinking the right kind of milk (for most people, non-fat milk is the best choice) and not adding a high caloric load to your meal.
Is it water you always reach for? Some people say that drinking a glass of water a half-hour before eating helps you feel full so you won't overeat. That might be a trick that works for you. As far as water with meals, some say drinking when you eat makes it harder for your body to digest, while others say it helps slow down eating and makes swallowing easier.
What to do:
Think before you drink — if you like to have a beverage with your meal, choose one that enhances your health. And if you prefer to enjoy your beverages between meals, that's a fine choice to make as well.