52 Eats for Weight Loss (Part 1)
Wanting to get get rid of the extra pounds that
you gained during the summer holidays? Here is the first part of our 52 eats for
weight loss. These tips might just help you loose those extra pounds!
- Double your veggies.
Make the vegetable portions on your dinner plate twice the size of your meat portion.
Vegetables are chockfull of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, and typically, low in fat and heart-unhealthy, saturated fat. More importantly, high bulk, low calorie veggies fill you up before they fill you out, crowding out the opportunity to overeat the higher fat meats at dinner. Eating three to five servings of veggies daily can help appease your hunger, yet please your waist. Keep your meat to no more than 3-ounces (about the size of a woman's palm) at dinner and double up on the veggies on your plate.
- Go skinless.
Don't eat the skin off the chicken at least once this week. Going skinless will cut the fat and saturated fat in your chicken breast by at least half and the calories by almost 15 percent. Whether you pluck the bird's outer coat before or after it's cooked will make no difference in the fat content of the meat. But if you don't have the willpower to toss the crispy skin once it's done, strip it before the bird goes into the oven. Use a juicy marinade, BBQ sauce, or a basting sauce to avoid an overcooked bird.
- Drink less juice, and eat more fruit.
While 100 percent fruit juice gets a thumbs-up over soda when it comes to nutrition, the condensed calories and low fiber content in juice get a thumbs down compared to fruit. Get this: Orange juice has more calories per ounce
than cola, so you can easily guzzle a ton of calories quickly. Stick with high fiber, tummy-filling, whole fruit more often. Firm bananas, apples, oranges, and tangerines travel well for those with an on-the-go lifestyle.
- Switch to whole grains.
Eat your lunchtime sandwich on whole wheat bread or whole grain bread at least once this week. The term "whole" is a tip-off to getting a whole lot more nutrition. Whole wheat bread slices up at least twice the amount of fiber, zinc, vitamin B6, and magnesium as white bread. Read the label to make sure that the bread is made with only 100 percent whole wheat or whole grains If you want to gradually break into the whole wheat club, use whole wheat bread as the bottom slice of your sandwich and regular bread as the top layer. Eventually, make the whole switch to whole grains.
- Include veggies at lunch.
To stave off the mid-afternoon hungry horrors, tack on some veggies at lunch to create a more satisfying, higher volume mid-day meal. Add a side salad with your sandwich or stuff a salad into a whole wheat pita along with some lean protein. If cold veggies at lunch make you shiver, brew a pot of vegetable soup and slurp it up along with your lunch sandwich.
- Dump the donut.
Instead of a donut for breakfast, have an English muffin or half of a jumbo bagel (save the other half for lunch). Believe it or not, a chocolate glazed donut can have the same number of calories as the English muffin and a half bagel combined! Top the English muffin or bagel half with peanut butter or light cream cheese, and either breakfast option still serves up less calories than that donut. Bonus tip: Look for whole wheat or whole grain English muffins or bagels for even more fiber and nutrition at breakfast.
- Go easy on the cheese.
Use a lower fat instead of regular cheese, or eat less of the real thing. Ounce for ounce, the melted cheddar cheese oozing from the top of your hamburger has more calories, fat, and saturated fat than the burger. Talk about top heavy. Try using a lower fat variety that actually tastes and melts like the real thing.
Or, use less of a strong, regular cheese. A sprinkle of feta, a smattering of grated fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano, or a smear of soft goat cheese can satisfy your yen without damaging your waist. Invest in a good cheese knife that allows you to cut paper-thin slices of your favorite hard cheeses.
- Stack a veggie-heavy sandwich.
Build a sandwich that has more lettuce and tomato than meat. Stack the meat filler in the sandwich to no higher than the thickness of a standard slice of bread. Then pile on low calorie slices of lettuce and tomatoes to the combined height of both slices of bread. Presto: your sandwich tower has the height of the Empire State building yet the svelteness of the Eiffel Tower.
- Use lean ground turkey.
Substitute lean ground turkey for ground beef the next time you make meatballs, meatloaf, or chili. This little substitution can cut over 30 percent of the calories and at least half of the fat and saturated fat in a three-ounce serving. Smothered in a zesty tomato sauce or flavored with seasonings, you'll never be able to tell the difference. If you're feeling a little gun-shy about abandoning the beef, use half turkey and half lean beef.
- Skip the soda.
Replace a can of soda with water at least once this week. Pop open a 12-ounce can of cola and you'll drink about 150 calories entirely from 9-plus teaspoons of added sugar. Keep guzzling that amount daily, and in three weeks there will be another pound of you in the mirror. For a no-calorie drink with fizzle, try sparkling water flavored with lemon or lime slices. Too blasé for your sweet taste buds? Combine one ounce of juice with 11 ounces of carbonated water and ice for a very low-calorie refreshing drink on the rocks.
- Match grains with veggies.
Eat equal portions of vegetables and grains at dinner. A cup of cooked rice or pasta has about 200 calories, whereas a cup of cooked veggies doles out a mere 50 calories, on average. To avoid a grain calorie overload, eat a 1:1 ratio of grains to veggies. The high fiber veggies will help satisfy your hunger before you overeat the grains. If you go back for seconds, make sure you eat equal amounts of both.
- Switch to lower-fat milk.
Switch from regular milk to 2 percent fat. If you already drink 2 percent, go down another notch to 1 percent or skim milk. Starting at 150 calories for a cup of whole milk and working down to 2 , then 1 percent and finally to skim milk, each step downward cuts the calories by about 20 percent. Gradually declining the milk fat content will allow your rich palate to adjust subtly to a less rich milk. Once you train your taste buds to enjoy skim milk, you'll have cut the calories in the whole milk by about half and trimmed the fat by 95 percent.
- Munch on pre-dinner veggies.
If you are a pre-dinner muncher, snack on only veggies. If you don't usually eat anything, try a plate of veggies before dinner to help curb your appetite. With fewer than half of all Americans eating the minimum number of servings daily, it's time to make vegetables a daily appetizer at dinner. Limiting your pre-dinner chow to low-calorie veggies will help take the edge off your appetite, but not at the expense of your hips. Dress up baby carrots, pepper sticks, celery, and broccoli florets by dunking them in salsa, low fat salad dressings, flavored mustards, and relishes.
- Scream for less ice cream.
Lighten up on the scoops of ice cream. When it comes to frozen delights, whether it's no-fat or full-fat, controlling the serving size is the only way to control the calories. Designate a custard dish as your permanent ice cream bowl and keep to a small, 1/2 cup mound. Top with berries to give the impression of a larger portion. Or, prop your petite serving atop a 17-calorie, cake-style ice cream cone and lick to your waist's delight.
- Make it a veggie pie.
Order your next pizza topped with more vegetables and less meat. Loading the pie with low-calorie, low-fat veggies will muscle out the more traditional fatty meat toppings. Compared to a meat pie, a veggie pizza can have 25 percent fewer calories and about 50 percent less fat and saturated fat. If a meat pie is a must, order it with half the usual amount and go heavy on the veggies.
- Hanker for a Happy Meal.
Think small at the fast food joint. Ordering a small burger and a small pouch of fries can end up saving a small fortune in calories and fat. A big deluxe burger and super size fries can shell out close to 1,200 calories and over 60 grams of fat. Compare that to the smaller burger meal that can have you exiting the drive-thru with less than 500 calories and 20 grams of fat. Better yet, make the small burger a grilled chicken sandwich without the mayo (use the BBQ sauce), and order a small salad with low-fat dressing instead of the fries. Now, this is a happy meal.
- Dress down your salad.
A tablespoon of regular dressing can have as much as seven times the calories of the leafy greens it coats. Use a variety of light dressings or dilute regular oil-based, bottled salad dressings by draining some of the oil that is floating on the top and replacing it with water or a flavored vinegar. For a homemade, light dressing, use the 1:2:3 formula. Use 1 part olive oil, 2 parts water or juice, and three parts of a flavored vinegar plus some seasonings. A favorite: 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 tablespoons orange juice, 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, and chives.
- Don't desert dessert.
You don't necessarily have to desert dessert. Eat 25 percent less and be proud of yourself. Call a food "forbidden," and you'll start an internal war that is almost guaranteed to have you throwing in the towel (or napkin). Sweets, or any food for that matter, don't have to become an all-or-nothing scenario. Make that slice of Death By Chocolate just a sliver instead of a hunk; the cookies, a couple rather than a entire row; and the candy bar, a mini morsel rather than a one-pound bar. Remember, anything can be low in calories if you don't eat a lot of it.
- Buy smaller bags of chips.
Forget about buying the large, six-ounce bag of chips, buttered popcorn, or cheese curls. Even though baked chips, light popcorn, and pretzels may save you some calories and fat per serving in comparison, the problem is that we end up consuming too many handfuls when you buy the larger bags. Buy these items only in those cute little one-ounce lunch pack sizes to keep your hands from continually reaching in the bag.
- Snack smartly.
Snack with your health in mind. Smart snacking can help with your weight loss efforts by taking the edge off in-between meal hunger before it develops into ravenous over-eating. Since fewer than 30 percent of Americans are eating the minimum number of servings from the dairy and fruit groups, make snacks work for you by choosing foods that may be missing at mealtimes. Smart snack ideas include a yogurt and a piece of fruit; a baked apple or pear; or a homemade fruit smoothie made with milk and yogurt, fruit, and ice, blended to a frosty swirl.
- Do a lap around the mall.
Walk around the mall an extra time before heading home. Depending on how often you shop and how spacious the mall, your shopping outings could develop into an Olympic sport. In Minneapolis, the Mall Of America's 1996 Mall Walker of the Year walked off 140 pounds. And just think -- with all that weight loss, you'll be forced to spend a lot of time shopping (walking) for new clothes. Grab your sneakers and credit card, and head to the mall.
- Get off the bus early.
Get off the bus or train two stops early and walk the rest of the way. If you can't seem to find the recommended minimum of 30 minutes daily to exercise, then make your workout part of your commute. Forget the door-to-door commuter service and factor in a 15-minute walk both in the morning and at the end of the day. A brisk walk is a great way to energize the start of your day and an absolutely fabulous way to walk off the office stress before you head home. Make sure your footwear is meant for brisk walking.
- Rock around the house.
Turn on some music and dance around the house. Have you ever seen a chunky Rockette? Use your home as a private stage to audition for a fantasy Broadway musical or the rock concert of your dreams. A 150-pound person dancing up a storm will use up about 5 calories a minute. Consequently, a 20-minute home performance will have you dancing off 100 calories. Turn up the tunes and raise the stage curtain. A trimmer star is about to be born.
- Buy new fitness duds.
Let's face it: Good equipment is everything. Proper shoes that make it comfortable to walk, and clothes that make you feel good when you move, can act as an incentive to lace up the sneakers and hit the walking path. The American Council on Exercise warns that athletic shoes will lose their cushioning after three to six months of regular use, increasing the susceptibility to knee and ankle injuries. Replace them periodically. Buy a comfortable sweat suit or shorts and a tee-shirt in hot-to-trot colors, such as bright red or orange, which are known to have an invigorating effect.
- Unload one bag at a time.
Unpack the groceries from the car one bag at a time. This little habit will give you two workouts in one. The many trips schlepping back to the car will have you burning calories and lifting, a strength-building activity that can help build and maintain your muscles and bones. Hefty produce weighs more than feathery potato chips, so stock those grocery bags with nutritious apples, oranges, potatoes, and other fruits and vegetables to make your unloading more of a workout.
- Take a few quick walks.
Get up and walk around the office or your home for five minutes at least once a day. A little jolt of exercise can help break the monotony of the workday and help walk off some workplace stress. A brisk five-minute walk daily will parlay into an extra 35-minute walk by the end of the week. Break for two five-minute jaunts daily and you'll have walked over an extra hour weekly. Set an alarm clock on your desk or program your computer or watch to beep to remind you to get up and move.
to view the second and last part of this weight-loosing tip!