Consume fewer calories each day with easy food swaps. Discover the truth behind trendy health foods and little diet changes that will help you lose weight.
You’re exercising moderately every day, eating extremely clean Monday to Friday, and to top it off, are getting 7-8 hours of sleep every night, but the weight doesn’t seem to be budging. So, what’s the deal?
Sometimes it’s the little things that can make all the difference, and more often than not, the little thing that’s sabotaging your efforts can be as small and as simple as a dash of olive oil in your salad. For those wanting to shed a few kilos, you need to become a savvy dieter… and we’re here to show you how! We’ve collected some of the best questions, common missteps and straight-up confusing situations and explained why what you’re doing may not be working as well as it could.
“I’m eating healthy snacks, but I’m not losing weight!”
Well, the question then becomes… how much healthy is healthy? We all know that nuts are a great, filling, yummy snack! But, when trying to slim down and get that banging bod, the key is choosing wisely. You may be thinking that eating an entire bag of almonds is ‘healthy’, but it’s far from a calorie-free snack – so you shouldn’t be going nuts on nuts! Don’t get us wrong – almonds are an awesome, nutritious snack – but portion your servings out or stick to a small handful (around the size of your palm is a good guide).
“But it’s just one cheat meal!”
True. But did you know that you can easily blow out an entire week’s worth of calories in one night? So before you go scoffing down that pizza on #cheatday, remember that one pizza can contain anywhere between 2000 to 3500 calories! That’s an entire feast day of eating, if not more!
So, how do we indulge and still say goodbye to those worrisome wobbly bits? The bittersweet truth is: it’s about practising self-control and balance. While admittedly, cravings for junk food can be seductive, it’s important that you learn to manage your portions. Fancy a slice of pizza? No problem. One slice of pizza will only set you back around 200 calories – it’s not much in the grand scheme of things. When cravings strike, immediate guilt or next-day blemishes don’t need to be the price you’ll pay to sate them. Make smarter, more diligent choices by sticking to smaller portion sizes, and enjoying (as they say) everything in #moderation.
“I’m adding this because it’s good for me!”
Did you know that a seemingly small decision, like adding half a cup of brown rice to your meal, can almost double its caloric content? If you’re cooking from home, making sure you get the right amount of a certain ingredient is the key to achieving that #summerbod. You might think you’re doing yourself a favour by adding a serving of whole grains to dinner, but when it comes to getting the most bang for your buck, veggies are your best bet.
Generally speaking, if you’re trying to lose weight, half of your plate should be filled with low-calorie vegetables like leafy greens, mushrooms or carrots, another quarter with good quality, low GI carbohydrates, and the remaining quarter with a source of lean protein.
Next time you’re whipping up a pasta dish, why not swap out half of the portion with zucchini noodles? Or opt for cauliflower rice instead of traditional rice – yum!
“It looks healthy, so it must be healthy. Right?!”
Erm, not necessarily. If you’re someone who chooses the most visually appealing item on the menu – such as the #instaworthy fruit smoothie bowl – it’s easy to convince yourself that you’re doing so because it’s healthy. With its fresh fruits and nutty toppings, it’s no wonder this super popular breakfast item is a go-to for beautiful brunch snaps. But, believe it or not, a traditional acai bowl can contain anywhere up to 800 calories! In fact, an acai bowl isn’t much better for you than a scoop (or two) of gelato. And when you consider that the main ingredient in this delicacy is sugar, it becomes pretty clear why they’re so darn delicious.
So if your brunch clocks up the equivalent of an entire day’s eating, calorie-wise, then what do you do? Say no to your invite and miss out? Pfft. Life is for living, and working towards your ideal weight shouldn’t have to mean missing out on dining out with your friends or family.
Here at SFD, we teach you how to become a clever ‘part-time’ dieter – and how to nourish your body on fasting days with minimal calories from the right foods.
Our favourite food swaps
After several years of intermittent fasting, we’ve developed a sneaky bank of swaps which we’ve decided to share #justcoz. While 250 grams of carrots are equal to 20 grams of chocolate in caloric terms, sometimes a veggie stick just won’t cut it. So we’re big fans of making educated, savvy selections. Here our favourite picks if you want to indulge in your favourite foods, but, at the same time, don’t want to sabotage your fat loss.
Fancy something sweet? Try a dairy milk chocolate frog for only 64 calories.
What about something to help you fly through your fast day? Try 2 cups of air-popped popcorn (only 60 calories!)
Is takeout your weakness? Our delicious butter chicken recipe in the member’s recipe library tastes better than the real thing, and best of all? It’s less than half the calories of the traditional high-fat takeout meal.
Ultimately – the choice is yours. If you fancy a burger, then enjoy a gosh-darn burger – without the guilt. Sometimes it’s important for our mind, and soul to eat the real thing! Just remember that fast fails happen and you’re allowed to make mistakes. Don’t let one slip up push you on a downward spiral for the rest of the week. Practice moderation, variety and balance, believe in yourself, and nourish yourself with good quality, nutritious food – you’ve got this!
What are your favourite food swaps? Share your food swaps in the comments below!