Do you also think that maintaining a healthy calorie count is one difficult task hindering your weight loss goals or weight gain goals? Well not exactly, if you follow simple rules of calorie counting.
Trust us when we say that weight management doesn’t require any kind of magical diet program or a wonder pill if you are looking for long term results. To make the process simple and healthy for yourself, all you need to do is to chuck your bad eating habits and inculcate the habit if counting calories in our daily diet.
Almost everyone is aware of the diet mistakes they are making, but refuse to practice restraint in them because of their erratic lifestyle and fast-paced schedules. Some of the common bad eating habits we often indulge ourselves in include:
- Excess of alcohol
- Binge eating
- Sweet cravings
- Snacking on junk food
Reducing on your bad habits is definitely a great start for your weight loss goals, but there is more to it. Here we give you some simple tips that can actually help you in maintaining weight or losing those extra pounds.
1. Reduce Your Liquid Calories
Many nutritionists often state that on an average we consume 10 to 30% of our daily calories through liquid sources. This means we are drinking more calories than we can even think of, that too unknowingly. If you want to reduce your weight then consider cutting down on liquid calories as much as you can.
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition conducted a study to analyze the liquid and solid calorie intake of some 800 adults ranging in the age from 25 to 79 years. The findings of the study are as follows:
- Reducing 100 liquid calories per day resulted in a 0.5-pound weight loss over the period of 6 months and 1.5 pounds in 18 months
- Reducing 100 solid calories resulted in a 0.1 pound weight loss over the period of 6 months and 0.3 pounds 18 monthsThis means reducing one serving of any sweetened beverage from the daily diet resulted in the greatest amount of weight loss over the course of time.
What You Can Learn From This Study?
So, if we go by the metrics shown above, it is clear that out of 3000 approximately calories you are consuming in a day at least 300 to 1000 out of them are coming from liquid sources. Same way, if you are restricting yourself to 2000 calories in a day, then around 700 calories are coming directly from liquids you are drinking.
The first step you can take towards controlling this calorie intake is to analyze what you are drinking. Make a journal to keep a track of everything you are drinking for a week. Then hit the search engine to find calorie content of all the beverages of you have been drinking to get your calorie numbers in order. Once you get the total calorie count you have consumed through liquids in a week, divide it by seven to find out your daily liquid calorie intake. This information will be really helpful in reducing your liquid calories.
Now that you have all the numbers with you, aim to reduce your liquid calorie intake by 50%. Drinks and beverage that you should be avoiding include:
- Fruit Juices
- Sweetened coffee with milk and cream
You might want to eliminate fruit juice from this list, but the truth is most of the fruit juices are just plain glorified sugar syrups, lacking seriously on the nutrition part i.e. Fruit pulp and skin. This leaves fruit juices with more sugar than a can of soda. Instead, focus on drinking unsweetened or naturally flavored milk as it is a good source of nutrition
2. Analyze Your Daily Calorie Intake
Most of the times we end up underestimating our very own daily calorie intake, which means, if you think you are consuming around 2000 calories every day, you are actually taking around 3200 calories. The example we are giving here might not be that accurate, but we can ensure that you are definitely eating more than you think. While some of these extra calories are coming from your liquid foods, chances of you overeating on solid foods are also very high.
To gain control over this, follow the same path, the one we suggested for liquid calories and make a weekly inventory of your calorie intake. Knowing a number of calories you are consuming means half the battle won. Once you are equipped with this crucial information you can easily determine the types of food you must be overeating, which are leading to your calorie surplus.
3. Avoid Calorie Dense Foods
We are not advising you to avoid all kinds of calorie dense foods because 20 to 30% of your daily calories should ideally be coming from healthy fats. However, there are certain calorie dense foods which you should avoid, some of them are:
- A packet of your favorite candies, which you can eat easily, contains 800 calories, which are equal to eating 6 to 7 baked potatoes. Snacks with a high amount of sugar are mostly calorie-dense in nature.
- A pack of tortilla chips combined with your favorite salsa sauce is equal to a number of calories that come with 30 ounces of 80% lean ground meat. Snacks come with a high amount of fats and carbs, which are easy to overeat.
- You need to eat at least 8 to 9 oranges to reach a number of calories you consume with a single glass of orange juice i.e 500 calories. Drinks that come laden with liquid calories are easy to consume.
To avoid such calorie dense foods it is advisable to stick to whole foods as they are hard to overeat. Thus, you can easily reduce your intake of calorie dense foods by up to 80% and replace it with fresh fruits, veggies, and lean meats instead.
The Bottom Line
Reducing liquid calories, avoiding calorie-dense foods and knowing what you are eating are the basic guidelines that can help you in creating a diet plan that will be conducive to a healthy fat loss.