So, you’re looking to lose weight, and quickly. While there is no quick fix for permanent weight loss, there are ways to begin shedding pounds immediately. Even if you’ve cut out the Twinkies and Fluff, there are other foods that may appear to be healthy, but these culprits could be hindering your weight loss efforts.
1-Whole Wheat Pasta and Bread
Whole wheat pastas and breads are loaded with carbohydrates. It’s true that you need carbs for energy – but when you’re trying to lose weight fast, you should focus on eliminating these types of carbs.
Tip: Try swapping spaghetti squash or other veggies in your pasta dishes, and eat salads instead of sandwiches.
Even if you happen to find one that is low in sugar and sodium, ask yourself if you will be satisfied eating it. Having an small frozen lunch or dinner will not do you any good if an hour later your feeling famished again.
Tip: Make your own frozen meals where you’re in control of the ingredients.
Let’s face it, there will be times of indulgence. Be wary, though, of having too many prepackaged snacks around. Those one hundred calorie snack packs sound like a great way to control calories and portions, but most of the snacks are junk food that you want to avoid.
Tip: If you really need that indulgence, read labels and find a snack you can feel good about eating.
4-Sugar-Free, Fat-Free, or Anything-Free
They say nothing is life is free, and the same applies to food. Companies now are labeling foods as fat-free, sugar-free, gluten-free, etc. However, they will replace what they take out by increasing something you’re trying to cut out (example: adding sugar to fat-free foods).
Tip: Buy the full fat/sugar version and have it as an infrequent treat.
Many protein bars contain enough calories to be a meal replacement, so if you’re eating it as a snack then you may be consuming more than you think. Many are also as bad as eating a Snickers bar nutrient wise.
Tip: Read the labels and find the best bar out there. Another alternative is to swap it out for another high protein snack, such as plain Greek yogurt.
6-High Sugar Fruit
Fruit is not the enemy; however, you still need to keep fruit consumption in check. High sugar fruits, when eaten in excess, can halt your weight loss efforts.
Tip: Eat fruits that are lower in sugar such as apples and berries.
Peanut and other nut butters are loaded with fat and added sugars. Since they are caloric dense foods, you should consume them in moderation and pay attention to the serving size.
Tip: Look for nut butters with no added sugar and a short ingredient list, or better yet, make your own.
8-Granola and Trail Mix
Granola bars and trail mixes are often loaded with dried fruit and chocolate (aka sugar and fat) to make them taste better. This is another one of those that has a lot of calories for such a small amount of food.
Tip: You guessed it – make them yourself.
9-“Healthy” Restaurant Entrees
Restaurants are good at taking something that should be healthy and make it into something worse. Salads in particular can rack up calories, and sometimes they’re worse than that filet mignon you passed up.
Tip: Do your research ahead of time to find an entree that won’t set you back too much.
10-Store Bought Vegetable and Fruit Juices
Store bought juices sound convenient, but they are not going to help when you’re trying to shed pounds. Vegetable juices are high in sodium, while fruit juices are high in sugar.
Tip: Make your own juice where you can control any added sodium or sugar. Better yet, eat the fruits and vegetables whole as it will be more satiating.
Weight loss does not have to be difficult. Don’t stress over it too much; remember too much stress will hinder weight loss as well. Finally, don’t forget to drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated is key in helping you shed the weight.