Don’t fill up on bread or chips before dinner. If you can, just send the bread away! Otherwise, you are full before you begin and you still feel like you need to eat an entre’. This is not good for the waistline!
Limit sugar-free products. Especially the ones made with aspartame. Not only has aspartame been proven to cause cancer, but it has also been known to cause headaches and other symptoms that mimic Multiple Sclerosis. Your body doesn’t know the difference between aspartame and sugar, so it raises insulin levels which in turn will make you crave sugar. The more sugar free products you have, the more you crave. Aspartame has been found to be highly addictive in things like diet coke and sugar free gum. If a smoker quits smoking they usually turn to gum. If an alcoholic tries to quit drinking they usually go to diet soda. Most of these people have reported after trying to quit sugar free gum or diet soda, that it was harder for them to quit the products made with aspartame then it was to give up their original vice. Better options are Stevia or Agave Nectar.
Try to plan the night before what you are going to eat for breakfast, lunch and snacks. This way you can have your snacks with you and you won’t be tempted by office sweets.
Always choose the low fat or non-fat versions of dairy products. You want to cut out as much saturated fat as possible in your diet and dairy is the first place to start. Cheese is a killer to the waist line so always choose the non fat version if possible. “Veggie” cheese or soy cheese is a nice alternative as well. It is lower fat and the “Veggie” brand has many different varieties that have great flavor and don’t taste like rubber.
Nuts are a great option for a snack, especially almonds. But, be very careful about the hand to mouth syndrome with nuts. It is very easy to mindlessly snack on nuts with their great crunch and pack in the calories and fat. When you buy a big bag of almonds, the minute you open the bag take 10-15 almonds and place them in little snack bags. This way, you always have a quick snack for on the go and you won’t get in trouble by over doing it.
Limit your coffee consumption to one cup. The more caffeine you drink, the more water you will need to add since caffeine is a major dehydrator to the body. If you are eating correctly small meals every three hours, taking in enough water, and taking your essential oil supplement, you shouldn’t need that afternoon caffeine boost!
Protein bars are great snacks for on the go. But, you never want to have more than one bar a day and only have half a bar per sitting. Also, watch the sugar content in protein bars. Some bars out there are so loaded with sugar you might as well be eating a snicker bar. Try to stay at 6 grams or less for the entire bar.
Having vegetables and lettuce washed, cut, and put into plastic containers is a great way to have a quick snack ready when on the go or if you just don’t feel like preparing something.
Try to stay away from fast food restaurants. More and more are coming up with healthier options but beware of “Atkins Approved” fare. All of these options might be low in carbohydrates but they are loaded with saturated fat! If you have no option but to go fast food, then order a chicken sandwich with extra tomato and lettuce, hold the cheese and sauce. Or, get a burger without the bun, cheese, or sauce and a side salad. McDonald’s now has a veggie burger. Carl’s Jr. Has a Chicken Sandwich on a whole wheat bun and Rubios has always had their Health-Mex Chicken Tacos or Chicken Burrito. So, as you can see, there are options but choose wisely.
When dining out, don’t be afraid to ask for a special order. Most restaurants will prepare the entree the way you want it prepared. You just have to get in the habit of asking. There will always be those restaurants that won’t deter from their menu, but more and more those kinds of restaurants are the minority. Ask for egg whites for your omelet with no butter. Ask for dressings and sauces on the side; and ask for vegetables to be steamed, not sauteed in butter. Most likely the restaurant will do it to make the paying customer happy.