Healthy living, and healthy eating, means taking a hard look at your intake and seeing what you need, what you want, and what really shouldn’t be there. Here we have five of the most important things to reduce or even cut completely from your diet.
There are many things we eat without even thinking about the consequences, or even more often, things we eat that we think are healthy and part of a healthy lifestyle. Taking a good hard look at what’s going in our mouths might be a reckoning we’d rather live without, but it’s important to really take stock. Here are a few things to take a look at and consider removing from your life, permanently.
1. Juice and Soda
We will start with the toughest, but the best. Flavored and sugary drinks are just gigantic calorie pools that you won’t even notice you are swimming in. Even “natural” juices like orange juice, apple juice, and many smoothie brands, can hold a shocking number of calories. Individual bottles of smoothies can hold up to three or four hundred calories – the equivalent of two bagels! Without even noticing, you can be drinking an entire meal during the day. Instead of being fooled into thinking that you need a juice or smoothie in order to refuel and have energy for the rest of the day, try a couple glasses of ice water during the day to keep cravings at bay.
2. “Suggested” Amounts
It is nothing to be ashamed off, most of us take the portion suggestions that we get, without even thinking about where they are coming from. When cookies or chips come in packages, most of us assume that specific amount is the amount that we are supposed to be eating. It might be six Oreos in a mini-pack, or a “single-serve” can of Pringles – whatever it may be, those suggested amounts are just that, a suggestion. Eat what you want, in the amounts that are right for you. Do not be fooled into thinking that just because something says its single-serve, means you need to eat it. More shocking is that more often than not, packages that companies try to pass off as single-serve are actually marked as being for 2 or 2.5 people in the calorie information.
3. Coffee Cream
People always say, the devil is in the details, and that is definitely true with our diets. Often, it’s not the big donuts and large plates of pasta that are really causing the problems, it’s the little things we add to our stomach without even noticing. Adding cream and sugar to your coffee multiplies the calories in a coffee by almost 100%. By sticking to milk or skim milk only, you can cut out a whole lot of unnecessary. You also might find that you can appreciate the real taste of coffee even better once you’ve taken out all the additives!
This one is going to be a toughie for so many people, but wait a minute and hear us out. Ketchup might be a vegetable according to some sources, but really, it’s mostly just sweet corn syrup. That extra sugar is a calorie punch to your gut, in the form of sugars that we cannot digest properly. Americans may put ketchup on everything, but that means everything is going to taste like ketchup. With a whole world of flavor to enjoy, it seems sad to reduce all food to one taste. Cutting out the ketchup can unlock a world of experience, and save your stomach some serious damage.
5. The Last Drink
When heading out for happy hour with friends, chances are you will be throwing back quite a few. Whether its beer or liquor, alcohol has more calories than the liquor companies would like you to know – hence the lack of labeling on many bottles. By cutting out just once of the drinks you would have had, you can save some serious calories. It might seem like a moment of fun, but that last shot is going to last a lot longer than you would prefer. Keeping the alcohol intake at bay can do wonders not only for your weight, but for your skin and appetite as well.