Pantry Items that Make You Gain Weight
It really is frustrating when you finally manage to build up the self-control to say no to dinners out with your friends, or to those break time snacks, but still end up very far from your weight goal. While it is true that staying away from fast food and preparing meals at home can give you more control over what you eat, the battle does not stop there. It’s only the beginning of a long journey to a complete lifestyle overhaul to achieve your weight goal.
When you commit to taking meal prep into your own hands, it is very important to carefully choose what you do and don’t include in your pantry. Some of the seemingly harmless food items that are probably in your fridge right now may not actually be good for you. Avoiding these items or knowing how to control their portion sizes will help get you closer to your weight goal. Let’s go through some of them:
This might come as a surprise since these are often advertised to be healthier options. This is where the importance of reading and understanding nutrition labels comes in. “Low-fat” or “fat-free” doesn’t necessarily mean it’s better. Good fats are important for our bodies to continue functioning well, and to keep cholesterol levels in check. Fat is also a component that make food taste good, and when you remove it, you also remove most of the yumminess with it. So to make up for it, manufacturers add loads of sugar, which we all know can lead to weight gain.
Another issue with these items is that we tend to think that since these are labeled “fat-free,” we can eat as much of them as we want. Eventually, we end up binging on all these snacks, which alters our eating patterns. It is best to opt for products that don’t contain trans fats, which are mostly found in packaged snacks and pastries. Good alternatives would be plant-based oils like avocado oils, nut oils, and olive oils.
Canned Food and Instant Ramen
Instant food items are usually high in salt, which will not only make you retain water and cause you to bloat, but can also lead to serious lifestyle diseases like hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases when taken frequently. Because these items are so convenient to prepare, they end up displacing healthier food items from our daily meals. The problem is when all the “just this once” moments pile up and, before we know it, we end up consuming canned goods daily. There are plenty of fresh meat options to go for when that craving for something really savory hits you. Try exploring different spices or using items like vinegar, lemon, or peppers to marinate your food. As for convenience, a little planning ahead will make a difference in meal prep.
While a glass of wine to unwind at the end of a long day can do wonders for the stressed-out soul, doing this often might cause you to get bloated. Alcohol packs more calories per gram than carbohydrates. While drinking isn’t completely prohibited when you’re trying to shed a few pounds, it won’t help your case either if you have three glasses of wine every other night. Limiting your intake to just one drink and choosing organic, gourmet cheeses to accompany it will not only let you keep the pounds at bay, but also give you a better unwinding experience. After all, you deserve only the best after a tiring day.
While getting rid of these items is a good way to start your lifestyle makeover, it wouldn’t hurt to throw in some improvements in your eating habits. Start small: Avoid eating at your desk, or while watching TV. Don’t skip meals. These might seem insignificant, but when you turn these into habits, you’ll definitely start to see results. Good luck!