Monday, January 14, 2008

Some more rather interesting articles.

Weightloss Blunders

You're eating less and exercising more. Why won't that belt budge? Even when you feel like you're doing everything right, there are certain behaviors that can still get in the way. Are you guilty of any of these habits?

1. Skipping Breakfast
Running late for work again? Before you bolt out the door on nothing but a cup of coffee, be aware that skipping breakfast can be bad news for weight loss. Chances are, you're going to feel hungry later, and that may be when you have less access to healthy food and are more likely to reach for a donut.

Antidote: Keep something on hand that you can eat on the run, such as fruit, yogurt or fat-free cereal bars. I like eating oatmeal in the morning. Sure, Alton Brown wouldn't feed the instant stuff to his horse but it does keep you full longer.

2. Feasting on Family Favorites
When your kids or spouse have a favorite family meal, it's hard to ban it from your menu list. Family favorites, such as lasagna, are often high in fat and calories.

Antidote: Serve yourself a smaller serving of the main meal and a large serving of vegetables or salad. It's also a good idea to try to find a lower-fat version of the family favorite. Or bother your family into eating with you. Nothing wrong with a little less of the fat and a little more of the veg!

3. Social Overeating
Eating whatever you wanted at a restaurant was okay in the days when people ate out only a few times a year. But these days we eat out every week, if not every day.

Antidote: Search the menu for meals cooked using low-fat methods, such as grilling or stir-frying, and ask for sauces and dressings on the side. That way you can control how much you have. And set a goal to drink a glass of water during your meal. You fill up more quickly and remain hydrated.

4. Not Counting Every Bite
A few potato chips while you open the mail. Just a sliver of cake while you help the kids with their homework. When we snack, we tend to be standing up or have our attention focused on another task. This can lead to thinking the calories "don't count." Unfortunately, they do.

Antidote: Set ground rules, such as "I don't eat in the car or while I'm watching television." And always, always keep track of everything you eat during the day. Knowing you'll have to write it down will make you think twice about having that one bite. I also find that planned portions help. I have 9 dark chocolate Hershey Kisses--oh stop making snooty faces, they might not be "quality" but they're marvelous--and they're 5 points. And since I know that it's almost half a point per chocolate, I can portion out more appropriately.

5. Expecting Too Much Too Soon
After several months of dedication you're down in the dumps—you feel the scale has barely moved. Expecting too much weight loss too soon is an extremely common blunder. A healthy rate of weight loss is up to two pounds a week. But many people aim for more than that, then feel like failures and give up when they don't reach that unrealistically high goal.

Antidote: Make "slow and steady" your mantra. If you really don't believe that one to two pounds amounts to much weight loss, lift two pounds of butter the next time you're at the supermarket. You'll realize how well you're doing.