Is the title a bit confusing for you? After all how can healthy food sabotage weight loss efforts. Let me explain a simple philosophy. Have you noticed how you relax and tend to consume more of something which is qualified as healthy? I know I used to for year. From fibre-rich biscuits to healthy oil, we all tend to overuse things we think are healthy and by the same definition can be consumed in excess. But, it is totally not true. Let me tell you that since last 10 days I have been diligently maintaining a food diary restricting my Calories and documenting everything I eat and drink. And the revelations are amazing. We actually start focusing on the nutrition and Calories of the food we eat. It takes away the mindless element to eating and makes you more conscious about eating well rounded meals. Let me share some foods, I have noticed people overeat often.
Yep, this is that superfood that is blessed with healthy fats. I have an avocado tree, and I can’t tell you how many of my neighbours and friends run after this fruit because it is so healthy. But did you know that avocado is also calorie dense. A reasonable sized avocado has about 280 Calories which can be pretty large chunk of your daily calorie requirement. Hence eat about ½ an avocado per serve. Any more and you are eating too many Calories.
Again nuts are nutritionally and Calorie dense. Remember each gram of fat, whether healthy or otherwise has 9 Calories compared to a gram of protein or carbohydrate at 4 Calorie. Just 6 almonds have 70 Calories. So having a large serve can wreck your weight loss efforts significantly. Remember that 6 almonds a day in the morning rule that many of us follow. That works perfectly.
3. Granola bars
Now muesli or granola bars are protein rich and healthy. But unless you are making them yourself or paying attention to the label, these are also very high in added sugar and Calories. Always check the label before buying and accordingly choose your portion size to consume reasonable Calories.
4. Fruit juices
In my opinion, fruit juices are more of an indulgence and less of a health food no matter what the brands shout. They take away good things like fibre from the fruit and even if they don’t have added sugar, have things like apple juice which have loads of sugar and Calories. So yes, they are good as an indulgence but avoid on a regular basis.
Unless you make your smoothies at home, the addition of excessive sugar, cream etc. can make these very high in Calories while you may be under the erroneous assumption that these are healthy. Whip up something healthy yourself using yoghurt, fresh fruit and dates or honey as sweetner. Way tastier and lighter on Calories.
6. Olive oil
Olive oil is a healthier fat and so many of us tend to use it a bit generously, don’t we? The other day I did a double trip when I found out that the extra virgin olive oil I had used in my salad dressing had 120 Calories from 1 tbsp. That is crazy high. So yes, we do need fat in our diets and we must not cut them out. But don’t overdo them as they are very high in Calories.
Salads unless prepared at home can be very high Calorie. The dressings that use mayonnaise, creamy dressings or even things like olive oil with a heavy hand, can be very Calorie dense. If you are eating outside, find out the nutritional information before consuming them. I am aware of 700 to 1000 Calorie salads that in effect could constitute 2/3 of a person’s daily Calories.
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Do remember that a good weightloss plan involves maintaining and increasing muscle loss while losing body fat. This is possible only when we have a Calorie Deficit in our diet as well as do weight training regularly. As far as diet is concerned, unless you know what you are eating and monitor it on a daily basis, you will never lose fat in your body. So be conscious and be aware of the food we tend to classify as healthy and overeat and eat sensibly.