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The childhood staple is enjoying a renaissance, with specialized eateries springing up everywhere but its nutritional profile is still in the dark ages (800 calories and 37 grams of fat!). Bring the Melty Goodness into the lite with these tips from Atlanta based nutritionist Carolyn O’NeiI, R.D.

Go With The Grain

Swap the puffy white bread for a loaf that lists whole wheat as the first ingredient—with 90 or fewer calories and at least 2 grams of filling fiber per slice.

Be Choosy About Cheese

Go beyond American: Pungent picks like goat (76 calories per ounce) provide the most flavor bang for your calorie buck. Feeling traditional? Use Low Fat Swiss (4.8 calories) or 2 percent cheddar (80 Calones). Stick to 2 ounces per sandwich, and slice thinly so it melts evenly.

Layer It On

Before cooking, slip in some crunch and extra nutrients with radish or apple slices. More antioxidant-rich picks include thinly sliced tomato or mushrooms and basil or spinach leaves (each 10 calories or fewer).

Description: 800 calories and 37 grams of fat!

800 calories and 37 grams of fat!

Get Saucy

Slathering the right condiment on the inside of your bread can take your lunch to the next level without loading on the fat. To add some zing, try a tablespoon of mustard (3 calories), salsa (4 calories), or olive tapenade (40 calories).

Butter Up Better

You only need to spread up to 2 teaspoons of butter (35 calories each) on the outside of your sandwich to get a crisp crust. Or just coat your pan with cooking spray before grilling and that number drops to nearly 0.

Description: Slathering the right condiment on the inside of your bread can take your lunch to the next level without loading on the fat

Slathering the right condiment on the inside of your bread can take your lunch to the next level without loading on the fat

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