Quick tweaks in your diet for healthy weight loss

When someone hears I am a dietitian, they often ask, “So, how can I lose weight?” The process of “losing weight” equals energy in compared to energy out.  Gaining weight didn’t happen overnight…changing those lifestyle habits can’t either. We are used to, and expect, quick fixes and practicing patience can be challenging.

Did you know? 

  • 3500 calories = 1 pound. If you divide that over 7 days in a week, that would = 500 calories a day.  (Humans are a little more complicated than this simple equation, but it works as a starting place.)
  • Losing 1-2 pounds a week is the safe way to lose weight.
  • Burning  250-500 calories a day with exercise and decreasing your food intake by 250-500 calories a day will promote that 1-2 pound weight loss
  • It doesn’t matter how you cut the calories (from carbohydrate, protein, or fat), but cutting down on fat gives you the biggest cut for the same sized bite.

 

How do I cut the 250-500 calories in 1 day? (The following can be applied to our children’s diets as well as our own)

Instead of this food

Switch to this food

Calories Cut

1 cup whole or 2% milk 1 cup skim milk 30-60 calories per cup
1 Frosted Pop-tart 1 cup Cheerios + ½ cup skim milk 55 calories
12 oz can of Coke 12 oz Diet Coke 143 calories
20 oz bottle of Coke 20 oz bottle of Diet Coke 239 calories
8 oz Hawaiian Punch 8 oz Crystal light, prepared 115 calories
1 tall Starbuck’s Caramel Frappuccino with 2% milk, without whipped cream 1 tall Starbuck’s Skinny flavored Latte with nonfat milk 113 calories
2 Tbsp Ranch dressing 2 Tbsp reduced fat Ranch dressing 86 calories
2 Tbsp sour cream 2 Tbsp light sour cream 18 calories
½ cup canola oil in baking ½ cup applesauce in baking 913 calories
1 oz cheddar cheese 1 oz reduced fat cheddar cheese 33 calories
1 oz potato chips 1 oz baked potato chips 40 calories
1 oz potato chips 1 oz pretzels 52 calories
4 oz* 85/15 beef patty 4 oz* 95/5 beef patty 25 calories
4 oz* 95/5 beef patty 4 oz* chicken breast 94 calories
4 oz*  95/5 beef patty 4 oz* pork tenderloin 57 calories
1 egg ¼ cup egg substitute 40 calories
Eating off 1 large plate Eating off 1 smaller plate Overall fewer calories!

*Weight of meat before cooking.

Couple these small changes in your diet with exercising 30-60 minutes a day.  Exercise the whole family! Go to the park or a nearby sports field to run and play with your children.  Exercising not only “allows” you to eat more, but helps you exercise your heart as well.

What helpful tips can you share on cutting calories in your home?

Comments

  1. Reply
    Treadmill Calgary March 19, 2013

    Thanks for providing this nice and really very useful post.

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