mistakes to avoid
There are times on your weight loss
journey when progress can come to a halt. Days or weeks can go by without you seeing movement on the scale, and
it can get downright frustrating. There are some mistakes to avoid during weight loss
Eating more than you think you
are: Most of us underestimate the
volume of food we eat (and consequently, underestimate the number of calories we consume in a day).
By fixing in your head what a serving
size or “portion” of food looks like, we can better estimate (and consequently, evaluate and calibrate) the
amount of food we eat at each meal. Keep in mind, when it comes to weight loss, you need to take in less
calories than you burn each day.
Two good rules of
A portion of meat (3 oz.) is the size
of a deck of cards.
A portion of carbohydrates (1 cup) is
the size of a tennis ball.
Please remember to fill up on
non-starchy vegetables – they are full of nutrients, have very little impact on blood sugar, and contain little
in the way of calories.
2) Not eating frequently enough: It is a social custom to eat “three square meals” a day. While
this may do for social purposes, for weight loss, you will want to aim for more frequent feedings. It is
recommended that you consume a minimum of 5-6 small meals each day. By doing so, your body gets the signal that
food is abundant, and there is no need to conserve energy.
Additionally, frequent feedings
maximize your metabolism, as your body is constantly busy, burning calories by digesting your meals. By not
letting too much time pass between meals, you stabilize blood sugar levels since they never really get the
chance to drop. By keeping your blood sugar stable, your hunger levels are minimized, decreasing the chances
that you will be tempted to overeat at your next meal.
3) Choosing to drink your calories instead of eating
them: This is a very common problem among
those attempting weight loss, due to the abundance of “healthy” diet smoothies, protein concoctions, and weight
loss shakes. There are 2 factors to keep in mind when relying on these liquid meal replacements.
First, many of the liquid diet shakes
on the market and all fruit smoothies have an abundance of sugar in them. This causes an immediate surge in
energy followed by a huge crash due to the release of insulin to control the blood sugar rise. This dramatic
shift in blood hormone levels (particularly insulin levels) is something you want to avoid, both for health
reasons and for weight loss.
Secondly, most weight loss shakes are
devoid of fibre. fibre is one of your most precious allies when you are dieting. It helps you feel full and
blunts the rise in insulin levels when all that sugar hits your bloodstream. While fruit smoothies do contain
some of the fiber from the pulp of the fruit, a better strategy would be to eat the actual fruits contained in
Lastly, the number of calories that can
be concentrated into a shake or smoothie is far greater than the equivalent volume of actual food. A 16 oz fruit
smoothie may contain as many as 600 calories, and will not fill you up all that much. On the other hand, eating
600 calories of fruit will prove to be much more than the typical person can manage in a single sitting. At
least, we can say that a normal person cannot eat more than 2 pounds of bananas at a single sitting.
Think about it- when making major
dietary changes, you want to get the most out of your calories. So, it is better to fill up rather than drink
and feel hungry minutes later.