We can’t possibly cover all of the foods that are acceptable to eat when you are trying to lose weight. Common sense can tell you that French fries are a no-no and an apple is great. What we’ve decided to do is concentrate on those foods that you SHOULDN’T eat. Of course, this could be a long list as well, so we’re going to touch on the worst and give you some possible substitutions.
Stay away from anything with caffeine in it – don’t forget that many sodas have caffeine. Caffeine has the same insulin-stimulating, weight-loss-inhibiting effect as aspartame. Unfortunately, this includes coffee. Stick to decaffeinated sodas, teas, and coffees.
Along the same lines, cut out any beverage that contains aspartame (Nutra Sweet), high fructose corn syrup, or refined sugar. Since you need to drink a lot of water in order to lose weight, try water with a slice of lemon or lime in it. It can be very refreshing and very satisfying!
Alcohol is a no-no in any weight loss plan. It’s OK to have a glass of wine with dinner, just don’t drink the whole bottle. There’s no better way to pack on the pounds than to drink excessive amounts of alcohol — even the ones that claim they have fewer calories. Moderation is the key with alcoholic beverages!
Boxed Pre-Packaged Foods
In general, you should stay away from a lot of these products. If the ingredients are not pronounceable, you should avoid them. In other words, anything with a lot of chemicals on the ingredient list is not going to be good for your diet.
White rice, while very filling, contains starches that can inhibit your weight loss. Stick to brown rice instead.
Pasta mixes are usually also not good because of the starches they contain. Stick to whole grain pastas instead. They taste just as good and are much better for you!
For the same reasons as pasta and white rice, white breads should also be avoided. Whole grain breads provide you with the carbohydrates you need and are less processed than the white breads. Be sure the bread you choose is made with whole wheat flour instead of just wheat flour. Believe me, it makes a difference.
If you love Mexican food, stick to whole wheat flour tortillas or corn tortillas when you choose your burritos, enchiladas, or soft tacos.
Canned and Jar Foods
Again, anything that is canned or jarred needs to be free of excessive chemicals. If the label contains ingredients with more than four syllables or are hyphenated, it won’t be good for your diet.
Chicken broth can be very fatty, so stay away. So are many soup mixes. The good news is that there are plenty of light or low fat choices out there.
These are the ones you should choose.
Commercially-made tomato sauces or tomato based sauces contain ridiculously huge amounts of sugar and salt. A better choice is to make these sauces yourself where you can control what goes into it. We’ll have a recipe later in the book for you to do just that!
Do not eat canned fruit or canned vegetables. If it’s been canned, it’s been cooked thus it loses some of its most beneficial nutrients. They can also contain processed or refined sugars, so stick to fresh fruits and veggies instead.
If you have to have a little oil to cook your foods in, choose extra virgin olive oil over the vegetable or corn based oils.
Choose only lean meats to get your protein intake. It’s commonly known that you should try to stay away from red meats like beef. Of course, if you’re like me and love your steak, choose a lean cut and don’t make the portion any larger than your clenched fist.
Choose fresh fish instead of canned and be sure it’s of the lower fat variety. This includes salmon, tilapia, and cod. Don’t bread your fish either, broil it or grill it to get rid of any residual fat that might remain.
White meat chicken breasts are better than dark meat because the darker meat contains more fat. The same applies to turkey.
Tuna is always a good choice — even if it’s canned. Just be sure to get the tuna canned in water — not oil!
Skim milk should be your first choice over whole milk or two percent. Avoid drinking too much milk, however, because it naturally contains some fats that can turn into unnecessary fat on you!
Unfortunately, cheese on a diet is also a big no-no. However, you can find low-fat or fat-free cheese in most grocery stores, so always pick these first. But use it sparingly!
Eggs are all right on your diet, but you’re better off to use only the whites instead of including the yolks. Egg substitutes are a great way to get your egg fix, so look for these in the store as well.
Fat-free sour cream is alright in moderation, but try to substitute with plain yogurt instead.
Vegetables and Fruits
Almost all fresh vegetables are good for you. It’s a generally accepted belief that you can eat all the vegetables you want and still lose weight. That’s pretty much true — as long as they’re prepared the correct way. It’s always best to steam veggies. You can also drizzle them with a little olive oil and bake them in the oven or — even better — roast them on the grill! Yummy!
Be careful of eating too many fruits that contain a lot of natural sugars like oranges and peaches. Because the sugar is naturally there, it’s not horribly bad for you, but you don’t want to overload on sugars because it can be converted to fat.
One big thing you must do when you decide that you want to lose weight is to immediately clean the cupboards and refrigerator getting rid of all the foods that can inhibit your diet. That means get rid of the chips, processed sugar, canned fruits, etc.
Don’t throw them away — give them to a local food bank. Believe me; they’ll be happy to get whatever you have to offer — diet friendly or not!
Once you do that, you get to go shopping! Don’t dread it! Just shop smart!