Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Trying to Burn Fat? Avoid These 11 Foods

Welcome back!  Sorry for the missing workout last week - we got back from vacation so late that I didn't have time to post one. Don't worry - we've got a great one coming on Thursday that will really help boost your metabolism and melt away those stubborn pounds!

But today, we're going to talk about food, because as important as exercise is, when it comes to burning fat, there are two parts to the equation....

When embarking on a fat burning regimen, it’s important to realize that there are foods that people pass off as healthy that aren’t! The following foods should be avoided if you're trying to burn fat and lose weight. Thankfully, there are always delicious substitutes so you will never feel like you’re missing out.

Italian olive oil, both oil and an oil bottle ...
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
1. Overt Fat – This includes processed coconut oils and olive oil. While these types of fat may be the healthier kind, remember that they still contain a lot of calories. It might surprise you how much fat many people add to their food without realizing it. If you still want to use overt fats like this, be sure to measure every teaspoonful. Or, instead of overt fats, try enjoying the naturally occurring fat contained in a serving of nuts, fresh coconut or 1/4 of an avocado. These whole foods contain other important nutrients and fiber that help you feel full and provide your body with good nutrition.

2. Empty Calories – If everything you eat is full of nutrition, it’s more than likely your body weight will balance all on its own - without you even having to try too hard. Instead of crackers for a snack, choose slices of fresh apple; instead of cheese made with dairy, try eating a nut based cheese in small quantities on celery.

3. Low Fat Dairy Products – Some say that you’ll lose more weight overall if you avoid dairy products entirely, but the low fat and fat free varieties are the worst because they are often full of processed sugar to make up for the lack of fat. You might think these are "healthier," but the truth is they are anything but!

4. Processed Sugar – White sugar and all processed sugar, including the new agave products, can be chock full of calories - and they spike your blood sugar, which causes weight gain and over time, can lead to diabetes. While one might be slightly better than the other, when it comes to calories it’s best to stick to real, whole, ripe fruit in moderation to get your sweets in. Again, these contain fiber, vitamins, and other nutrients besides just the sugar. And avoid any type of processed sugar, including things they try to pass off as healthy. Just say NO to sugar! It's one of the most important substances to avoid if you're trying to lose weight - or just be healthier in general.

5. Fast Food – Most fast food is terrible for you even when it tries to be healthy. Some fast food salads can top 2000 calories for one serving when combined with the fatty dressing they provide with it along with the fried chicken on top! If you want to order fast food, order the salad without the dressing, without the croutons, and without the meat for best results. Oh, and skip the crackers too. Come to think of it, that salad doesn't sound too appetizing now, does it? It's better to make your own at home with fresh ingredients, so you can control what goes in it - and it'll taste better too!

6. Processed Food – Whether it is freeze dried veggies, or flavored yogurt, the best thing you can do for your waistline is to avoid processed food like the plague. That includes protein powders and other potions. You want to shoot for 100 percent whole foods, as close to nature as possible. These contain the full range of nutrients your body needs to maintain a healthy weight.

7. Smoothie King Smoothies – Not to pick on Smoothie King, but most smoothie joints have a serious problem. Pretty much nothing in them is actually healthy. Everything has extra sugar by the truckloads and should be avoided at all costs. If you like smoothies, it's really easy to make your own at home in a jiffy! Just combine some fresh or frozen fruit, vegetable juice such as carrot, a handful of fresh spinach, and maybe some plain yogurt with a dash of honey in a blender, give it a whiz, and voila! Healthy smoothie at the ready!

8. Fancy Starbucks Drinks – These drinks are high in sugar and fat, and the “fat free” and “sugar free” varieties are full of dangerous chemicals that should be avoided as much as possible as well.

two slices of toasted white bread
Avoid white bread (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
9. White Bread – If you are going to eat bread, eat the highest nutritional bread you can such as sprouted bread like Ezekiel Bread. It has no preservatives, and has a lot of nutrition in it that many other types of bread don’t have. It also is easier to digest, and higher in protein.

10. Salt – Most food already has plenty of salt in it. A good way to cut down on salt is to use it during cooking but remove it from the table. The amount that is included in a recipe is usually the ideal amount for taste. There is no need to add more.

11. Fatty Salad Dressings – Mentioned above, fatty salad dressings are the bane of existence for healthy vegetables. Instead, make your own low-fat dressings by blending fruit with balsamic vinegar or using natural fats like avocado. Extra virgin olive oil is okay in moderation - just pre-mix it with vinegar and spices and you'll use less than if you dump it on the salad separately.

There are probably plenty of other unhealthy things you can do without. Each time you have a choice of what to eat, choose the item that is closest to a natural, whole food source for the healthiest and best fat burning results.

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