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CHRISTINA791 SparkPoints: (67,299)
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1/29/13 4:43 P

I eat something very similar for breakfast every morning (peanut butter and banana on an english muffin). I don't do jams that often, because when I do I like to go for my mom's homemade stuff.

It's a carb heavy meal, and usually my largest of the day, but it's a good breakfast for me and keeps me going through to lunch. The important thing is to track what you're eating, and to see if it fits with your dietary goals (for example, my heavier breakfast usually means that I prefer a lighter, very veggie heavy lunch). You can make improvements on the ingredients, too. Go for a natural peanut butter (one ingredient: peanuts), and nutritionally higher quality breads. Because a PB&J tends to be a little sugar heavy, you might want to swap out the extra fruit for some veggies on the side.

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
1/29/13 1:04 P

Whenever you wonder about a food being healthy, stop and think what it is replacing.

You can use wheat bread, low sodium peanut butter, even sugar free jelly, if you want, but I would think that a P.B. & J sandwich would be healthier than a LOT of food out there in any form.

Improve your diet, by making BETTER choices, not PERFECT choices.

IDJ1973 SparkPoints: (8,716)
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1/29/13 11:38 A

I love PB with a dill pickle or banana.. not so much with jelly

JAHINTZY SparkPoints: (18,090)
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1/29/13 10:51 A

I suppose it's different for each person but I have never considered pb&j a junk food, especially when using natural peanut butter and no sugar added preserves. Peanut butter spread on apple slices is a similar lunch for me that I especially love to have in the summer.

SNOWJESTER SparkPoints: (29,896)
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1/29/13 10:39 A

This thread gave me the worst craving for a pb and agave sandwich. It's definitely not something I have every day, I think of it as a treat. To many calories and not filling enough. I always want another.

1/29/13 9:45 A

I think a PBJ made with quality bread and peanut butter would not be junk food. Calorie-dense, yes, but that's OK once in awhile. If you have high-fiber whole wheat bread, peanut butter, and jam -- especially no-sugar-added jam -- you have a satisfying treat that will give you lots of fuel and a fair amount of nutrition. I especially love them with a glass of skim milk. It's too many calories to have very often, but I love them.

CHEETARA79 SparkPoints: (103,419)
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1/29/13 8:59 A

I have very little self control around peanut butter because I love it! And it is very calorically dense so it's not something I keep around the house. I treat PB&J as an occasional treat. I don't find it terribly filling either.

CLARK971 SparkPoints: (29,686)
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1/29/13 8:31 A

i think it is about what you like and what you can fit into your meal plan to stay within your ranges.

i buy natural peanut butter and kroger just fruit jelly. my kids don't seem to miss the added sugar.

i usually need only a tablespoon (or less of peanut butter for a sandwich).

i don't like wheat bread at all, so i buy whole grain white or white light bread. maybe not the best option, but it is what i like. I used to buy wonder smart white until hostess went away. the millies light bread i have has 70 calories per 2 slices.

my kids like peanut butter and banana sandwiches. this one might seem a little odd but they also like grilled apple and peanut butter sandwiches.

Edited by: CLARK971 at: 1/29/2013 (08:32)
LOVE4KITTIES Posts: 4,689
1/29/13 3:57 A

I second what the previous poster said, PB and J sandwiches on whole wheat are absolutely NOT junk food. I'll add that the fat in peanut butters (the kinds without added oils and other added stuff) is heart-healthy.

Edited by: LOVE4KITTIES at: 1/29/2013 (03:57)
DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (60,906)
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1/28/13 10:17 P

Empty calories? Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are loaded with complex carbs (if you use whole wheat bread) and protein. They're most assuredly NOT junk food! They're certainly better than your average twinkie. :)

35BYMAY SparkPoints: (1,477)
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1/28/13 9:02 P

I had a peanut butter and banana sandwich on rye today after working out and it kept me full for HOURS. If a pb & j keeps you from munching in the afternoon, then I think it is a fantastic lunch... much better than frozen meals... all sodium and very little to keep you satisfied for very long

MLANCE1 SparkPoints: (3,628)
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1/28/13 8:57 P

I consider them junk food and only eat them as a treat. I buy the Healthy Life Flax bread which is 40 calories each, I add 1 tbs of peanut butter, and one tbs of Sugar Free Polemers(sp?) Fiber Jelly so my PB&J's are under 250 calories but with very little protein and not much staying power I do consider them junk food.

LOVESTOWALK49 Posts: 705
1/28/13 8:57 P

I can easily fit them into my calories when I crave one. I love PB&J. I also love PB and honey. My maintenance calories are 1600 to 1950. I'm a small person only 125 pounds. To get more calories to play with set your exercise goal higher.

MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (11,728)
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1/28/13 8:03 P

I think I would try for an alternative, such as: paleo almond butter pancakes with grape or strawberry spread.

AM_MORRIS87 Posts: 1,665
1/28/13 7:53 P

Yeah, technically you can eat whatever you want as long as you can fit it into your calorie budget for the day. I think personally think pb&j sandwiches are junk food. If I eat one, I look at it as a treat. However, I use to eat pb & banana sandwiches all the time when I first started out on my journey. So, I guess it depends on how far along you are into your journey, if it's hurting you by causing you to not be able to stay in your calorie range for the day, if it satisfies you, etc.

If you are super loving pb&j's, and you want to eat as healthy of a version as possible, I would put it on double protein bread or P28 bread. I would also use either Nuts & More peanut butter or PB2. And I would probably use sugar free fiber jelly. If you don't care what kind of sandwich you eat, I would switch to a turkey sandwich or wrap, but that's just me.

If it fits into your daily calorie budget, you enjoy it, and it leaves you feeling satisfied, then I don't see anything wrong with eating it. You gotta do what works for you!

BEANBYDESIGN SparkPoints: (31,283)
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1/28/13 7:25 P

PB can be pretty good for you, but I tend to think of jelly as empty calories. Maybe swap out the traditional PB and J for organic jams or fruit preserves and all-natural peanut butter, to up the nutritional value?

Full disclosure: I regularly eat PB and chocolate hazelnut spread, and it doesn't seem to hinder my weight loss. I just watch portions (usually I only use 1 tablespoon of each spread, even though the "serving size" for each is 2) and I use seven-grain bread so I'm getting fiber as well.

1/28/13 6:38 P

Honestly, I think peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are total junk food. Lots of empty calories! I would not make that a regular part of my diet, but more of an occasional treat.

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,981)
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1/28/13 6:08 P

Technically you can eat whatever you want as long as it's within your calorie range. Certain foods do not cause weight gain or stall weight loss. Going over your calorie ranges does, that's it.

That being said, PB and honey sandwiches are one of my favorite things ever to eat, it's pretty much my ultimate comfort food. But, at around 450 calories for the one I make, with relatively little protein (1 serving/2tbsp of peanut butter is only 8 grams of protein), they aren't very filling for me. So, I don't have them too often anymore. But if you find the PB&J along with the fruit fills you up and keeps you satisfied, I don't see anything wrong with them.

Also, there's nothing wrong with frozen dinners as long as you pick the right ones. Healthy Choice makes some great options if you're in a bind and need something for lunch. I like the cafe steamer meals from them.

1/28/13 5:58 P

Account for the calories in the sandwich you're eating instead of worrying about the serving size on the packaging. Maybe 2 tbsp of pb (the serving size on the jar) will be too many calories for would be for me. As long as you're calories are in check, enjoy!

Keep an eye on the bread. Sodium can be super high in bread. Oh, and I got tired of added sugar in jelly and bad tasting sugar free jelly, so I prefer whole fruit instead. My fave is peanut butter and fresh blueberries. Mmmm!

READY2BFIT261 SparkPoints: (182)
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1/28/13 5:52 P

How healthy do you think peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are? I used to buy frozen dinners for my lunch, but am trying to get more healthy and stay clear of those. I have been taking pb&j along with an apple or banana for my lunch. Do you think this is ok, or would slow my weight loss. I don't use more than the serving size for either and put it on whole wheat bread. Thanks!

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