FOODS TO NOT AVOID if you're trying to lose weight. Sidney Fry assembles a cast of delicious food characters that might currently be avoided by some dieters in “8 Foods That are Surprisingly Good for Weight Loss” for Under Armor’s MyFitnessPal.com blog.
Perhaps in the past we've been told to skip them because of their fat, carbohydrate, or calorie content by some official nutrition agency. Or heard news stories that scared us away. The new news on these eight foods is that they might actually assist with weigh loss.
While having a list of absolute diet "no-nos" might be mentally easy, it can make accommodating a weight-loss plan to everyday life quite difficult. The less we enjoy a lower calorie meal plan the less likely we may be to follow it for weeks, months, or a lifetime. And that is the point of such a plan; to re-educate and re-train ourselves to enjoy eating in a sensible healthy manner over a lifetime. Feeling constantly and severely restricted is the path to be defeated by this challenge.
Fry's article may encourage some because it could add variety and taste to an eating plan that currently omits these items. The 8 foods discussed are:
1. Whole milk and milk products: “Several studies have found that when people reduce the amount of fat”, Fry says, which in the case of whole dairy food includes essential fatty acids, “in their diet, they tend to replace it with sugar and refined carbohydrates, which can have a worse effect on overall health.”
The key here will be in portion control. If the bulk of your daily protein comes from dairy products, it may be okay to eat a mix of full fat and low- or no-fat milk products.
If you cannot eat cheese without adding crackers, beware that this source of fat and hidden sugars can add considerable calories. Cracker serving sizes tend to be small. One serving of some products may be measured as 4 or 5 per 120-140 calories. If you don’t want to be constantly checking nutrition labels consider eating a FEW slices of apple or pear, or a few berries with an ounce of cheese instead.
(the Ritz cracker fat content value seems incorrect, more likely 3.7 grams fat)
2. Nut butters
Again, the healthy aspect of adding nut butters depends on portion control and not adding high-calorie crackers or other carbohydrate-rich foods to the snack. The standard serving size is 2 Tablespoons with a value of about 190-200 calories.
One small serving per day on a vegetable like a celery stick can be more satisfying than other snacks, as the higher fat content provides satiety.
Some people have advised pouring off the separated oil that accumulates at the top of jars of natural nut butters to decrease the calories by about 20 per serving. This can make the butter very hard.
BUT, pouring about half of the oil off saves roughly 10 calories/serving and the result is a firm butter that can be spooned out and eaten like a piece of cheese. The temptation to spread the butter on something almost disappears. It’s not spreadable and will break a cracker. Very tasty this way and encourages sticking to the correct portion size.
Once again, portion control rules when it comes to eating pasta wisely. As the title of the article says, “surprisingly” it is listed by the American Diabetes Association a low glycemic index food . Especially if it is cooked ‘al dente’, such that the starch in the durum flour-based food is not ‘liberated’ by the cooking process. Ways to tell if you the starch has remained trapped? According to Barilla, the water will not be cloudy during boiling and the noodles will not be sticky when drained.
4. Eggs: don’t skip the yolk; it’s has fat soluble Vitamins and essential fatty acids among other nutrients. http://www.dranthonygustin.com/egg-yolk-nutrition/
5. Dark meat poultry
6. Red wine: one 5oz. glass; hard to stop at just one.
7. Coffee: only healthy without milk or other “additives”.
8. Dark Chocolate: +70% cacao is tricky to find; the bitter taste is not the same as candy chocolate, as the sugar content is low and there’s no dairy.
This article provides 8 reasons why a sensible diet can be delicious and include a variety of foods. You may not initially welcome the caution that “portion control” is important in the enjoyment of certain items. However, if we could eat as much as we wanted of everything anytime, there would be nothing tempting about special occasion food treats.
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EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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