Losing weight can be a very difficult thing for many people. Those who find a way to shed those extra pounds are envied by the rest of us. We beg to know their secret to weight loss. We secretly wish we had their will power and we wonder what dangerous supplements they may be taking. The truth is, most of us lose weight with very small and simple changes to our diet and exercise plan. One such simple change you can make to lose weight: lose the empty calories.
What exactly are empty calories? Simply put, empty calories are those who provide no nutritional value whatsoever. Certain foods, such as those made primarily with white flour, sugar, or oil, can be considered empty calories. It does not mean they don’t have any calories, but that the energy you receive from the calories you are consuming is not optimal. In other words, those calories are in no way beneficial to your body.
Another way of thinking about it is considering what your food will provide for you before you ingest anything. If you’re in your house looking for a snack, you might find chips, crackers, dried fruit, fresh grapes, yogurt and cheese. Chips and crackers (and popcorn, too) can be low calorie or low fat, but what do they provide your body with?
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minerals or protein in carbohydrates such as these. Dried fruit may seem like a great option, but it only takes a couple bites to equal the calories of fresh fruit, making it much less filling that a large bowl of grapes. Fresh fruit, yogurt or low-fat cheese would make a great snack. The calories provide you with vitamin C, calcium and protein.
Another item considered a huge barrier to weight loss is liquid calories. These are also empty calories. Soda, coffee, tea and blended drinks rarely provide any nutrition. They also funnel through your stomach and do not keep you full. If you want to lose weight, lose the empty and liquid calories first. It’s a small step you can take that will make a big impact.
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