Do you still seem to be gaining weight despite eating salads instead of sandwiches and almonds instead of cookies?
Well, if this is the case, it may have everything to do with the common misconception about certain foods which we think are good for us, but actually contributing to our growing waistline. Even some of the best foods nature has to offer can lead to weight gain if you’re not eating them in the right portions.
To find out what mistake we are making, and how to correct them, let’s take a look at 12 super fattening foods you never think about.
Avocado is considered a superfood for its high fiber and potassium levels, for improving skin health, and for reducing cholesterol levels and the risk of cancer and diabetes.
However, it has its drawback in the fact that it is high in fat heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. So though avocados are rich in vitamins and minerals, they are also calorie dense. Use them in moderation as too much can tip the scales! I know this one is particularly difficult as avocados just make everything taste better.
Nuts are also full of heart-healthy fats but too many can be bad for you. An ounce of about 12 cashews carries about 135 calories.
They’re small and convenient to snack on, not to forget super tasty, so it’s really easy to get carried away. Try portioning out a small handful of almonds, or the number of other nuts you want to eat beforehand and then put the container or bag far away from reach before you start munching. This will help keep you from overeating and reaching for more.
3. Dried Fruits
Dried fruits are easy and convenient to eat but are full of added sugar. Because we think they’re good, usually we all end up eating more of these treats than we should.
Two tablespoons of dried raisins or cranberries carry as many calories as a cup of fresh raspberries or strawberries; this is why it’s better eating fresh fruits instead of dried ones.
4. Dark Chocolate
It is a fact that dark chocolate is good for you. Horray!
They contain antioxidants called polyphenols which are known to lower blood pressure and dilates blood vessels. But as cocoa comes with saturated fat and sugar, eating too much dark chocolate adds calories, which isn’t healthy for the heart.
5. Energy or Sports Drinks
The nutrition water you drink to help you focus at work gives the boost from its sugar and not from its vitamins and electrolytes! In fact, 20-ounce bottles carry 30 grams of additional sugar! We’re looking at you Red Bull and Gatorade.
Its better drinking pure or detox water to stay hydrated, and get your vitamins and minerals from fruits and vegetables!
6. Health Drinks
Health drinks in the market which promise vitamins, probiotics, and fiber, may also have added calories in the form of simple sugars. Avoid drinks with more than 1-2 ingredients as drinks with multiple ingredients have sugar or artificial sweeteners which aren’t good for your waistline.
The granola you eat can keep you full but also adds trans fats, sugar, and calories to your diet. Its portions are so small that most of the time you are not satisfied with one bowl, and end up filling the bowl till the milk is gone, add milk and repeat the vicious cycle!
It takes 7 minutes for our brains to realize our stomachs are full. So start off eating one bowl, wait 10 minutes, and if you’re still hungry, get another small portion. Most of the time, you’ll end up forgetting about that 2nd bowl all together.
8. Peanut Butter
Peanut butter is a confusing one. Nuts have healthy fats which boost heart health and keep your weight down. However, its butter contains unhealthy sugar and saturated or trans-fat.
The solution is to stick to butter with only one or two ingredients like peanuts and salt. You’ll get the same great taste without the guilt.
Did you know that the ‘healthy’ store-bought or premade smoothies have more calories than a cheeseburger? They contain 650-1000 calories because of its extreme fruit and vegetables and in most cases, simple sugars and syrups.
Make your own smoothies at home or pick up some fresh fruit as an alternative.
10. Frozen Yogurt
Frozen yogurt may be better than ice cream with regards to saturated fat. However, they are practically equal regarding calories and simple sugars. Since we think yogurt is healthy, we often load them up with fat-filled toppings, which results in more calories than a small ice cream.
Try and limit your toppings if you’re craving frozen yogurt and always start opt for the smaller size!
11. Protein Bars
The fiber and protein bars which promise you energy to kick start your day or hold over your hunger, are usually no better than candy bars.
Try to look elsewhere for your protein and fiber in perhaps fruits, vegetables, chicken, and eggs. Almonds are a great convenient snack as an alternative that will also boost your energy and keep you full.
12. Fat Free Products
Don’t get deceived by the fat-free cookies and cakes in the market and eat more of them thinking they are calorie-free. Sugar replaces the fat in these products, and unfortunately, that means these are still high in calories.
Now that you know the truth behind these foods, you’ll be able to start losing weight and eating healthier in no time! I’ve been guilty using many of these foods incorrectly in the past, and I just don’t see myself really getting over my avocado addiction, but least I am making informed decisions, Even if you just make or two small changes, you’ll see the difference in no time.