You’ve decided to slim down and have eliminated the usual culprits – butter, cheese, sweets and fried foods from your diet. But is weight loss slow? Or have you just hit a plateau? Evaluate your diet carefully and you may encounter some unpleasant surprises. Many foods that we robotically eat every day contain hidden calories and fats that slow or completely stop our weight loss process. Avoiding them will help you avoid cravings and burn fat faster.
Here is a list of 12 foods/drinks you need to stop consuming today:
It takes several oranges to make a glass of juice, but when you eat the spicy fruit, you’re unlikely to have more than one. Plus, the juice contains all the calories in the fruit, but not the fiber that makes you feel full and benefits your system. Even the tetra pack that screams ‘100% juice’ contains added sugar, giving you plenty of empty calories.
2. Oversized packaging
It’s natural to be tempted by the “extra 30%” offer on your cereal box. But research by Cornell University’s Food and Branch Lab shows that people tend to consume up to 22% more when they eat in larger packages. The same applies to oversized hamburgers and pizzas or ordering a value meal.
You’ve certainly heard of the dreaded beer belly, and you’ve probably stopped drinking the drink as well. But even the glass of wine you think is not so sinful is actually pulling you away from your weight loss goal. Experts say that a moderate wine drinker consumes up to 2,000 additional calories per month. Worse, drinking slows down the body’s fat burning process. That’s because alcohol is the first thing your body burns and removes from your system before moving on to food or other drinks, according to diet guru Robert Atkins.
Avoid sprinkling salt on your salads, fruit or curds. Most Indians already consume more than the recommended amount of sodium – 1,500 mg or 2/3 teaspoon of table salt, thanks to taking dal-sabzi. The added sodium not only increases your risk of hypertension, it also makes your body retain water and look bloated — so you don’t feel thin even if the scale shows you’ve lost weight.
Whole milk is loaded with extra fat and cholesterol. Choose the skimmed variety to enjoy quality milk without worrying about calories. It is also advisable to consume less than two cups of milk daily, including curds and paneer, when trying to lose weight.
6. Health bars
Nutrition bars are a convenient snack with super healthy nuts, but they also contain a lot of sugar — sometimes as much as a candy bar. Sweet content has also been reported to trigger dessert cravings. Plus, they provide a lot of fiber all at once, while it’s ideal to have fiber throughout the day to stave off hunger and improve digestion.
Enjoy your morning cup, but don’t have your cup of tea after tea when you’re at work. While tea itself is a weight loss aid – it contains compounds that help reduce the amount of fat absorbed by the body – milk and sugar negate this ability and greatly increase the calorie count.
8. Instant/frozen foods
If you’re craving an evening snack, you make a quick chowmein with lots of veggies. Opting for instant noodles is not a good idea as they are pre-fried for quick cooking. In addition, all ready-to-eat and frozen products contain high amounts of sodium and harmful preservatives.
9. Salad dressing
Salads are a dieter’s best friend, but the dressing you put on top (read: mayonnaise, a thousand islands) is your biggest enemy. It is advisable to simply add lemon juice or curd to liven up your salad. Also avoid toppings like olives and Parmesan to keep calories in check.
10. artificial sweeteners
be a dude halwa or macaroons, every treat imaginable is available in a ‘sugar-free’ avatar these days. Considering that every gram of sugar contains four calories, it’s tempting to use artificial sweeteners. But artificial sweeteners have been linked to a number of health problems, such as cancer and memory loss. Plus, the latest research suggests they make you fatter, not thinner.
11. Low-fat foods
Enjoy the good old glucose cookies instead of the high-fiber or multigrain ones that claim to be healthier. To make it palatable, manufacturers add high doses of sugar. Most oils contain the same amount of calories, so don’t get carried away by the healthy halo of some oils. Scientists have found that when people think they are eating a “diet food” they tend to eat 30% more.
12. pickles and chutneys
a spicy find it can flavor even the most boring dietary food, but it contains countless calories thanks to its high oil content. Chutneys should also be avoided. A tablespoon of coconut chutney contains 52 calories, 80% of which come from fat.