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Right after I had my second baby, I knew I had my work cut out for me in terms of losing weight. Before I got pregnant, I had already gained some weight, which I only added on with my second pregnancy. This is when I discovered that if I avoided certain foods, it really helped me with my weight loss. I put together for you a list of foods to quit eating to lose weight.
When I first started to lose weight, I didn’t focus too much on what foods I ate. I just tried to eat a healthy and balanced diet and get some exercise.
Working in some exercise into my day has always been a good way to help me along the way when it comes to losing weight.
However, at some point, the weight would not come off even though I thought I was doing a good job of eating healthy.
This is when I realized that I was doing some things that were sabotaging my weight loss. The list below are the foods that I stopped eating and drinking to help me get over the hump.
After I figured out what was getting in the way of losing weight, I was able to move forward with my weight loss and shed those last 10-15 lbs.
Here are some foods you should avoid if you’re trying to lose weight:
1. Trigger foods
Everyone has trigger foods. These foods that you cannot resist (or it’s very hard to resist) if they are freely available. For me, that’s mostly sweets but Nutella in particular. If there is a jar of Nutella in the pantry, I will keep sneaking some until I eat the entire thing, often in a matter of a couple of days.
If you are trying to lose weight, you need to avoid your trigger foods. If you have some in the pantry or the fridge, throw them out. You don’t need the added temptation they provide.
This doesn’t mean you’ll never eat them again but for now, they need to go. You are sabotaging your own weight loss by keeping those around the house.
If you like chips, get those out of your kitchen and out of the house. Whatever your trigger foods are, get rid of them and avoid them at all costs. The less you are around them, the less you have to resist them.
2. Wine/beer during the week
After a long day at work and an even longer evening with the kids, it’s nice to sit down with a glass of wine or a cold beer once the little boogers are in bed. However, I quickly realized that this was one of the things preventing me from losing the last bit of weight.
Alcohol has a lot more calories than a lot of people realize and it’s so easy to just have a couple of beers, which can easily add up an extra 300-400 calories at the end of the day. Also, I don’t know about you but alcohol can make me want to munch on something even when I’m not hungry.
Now, I try to keep my alcohol consumption to weekends and special occasions. If I’m out with friends for happy hour during the week, I’ll have a drink but otherwise, I don’t drink until the weekend.
3. White rice
Once I made the switch from white rice to brown rice, I realized something important: brown rice is so much more filling! I love eating carbs but they often left me feeling hungry only an hour later, which was frustrating.
For me, switching from white rice to brown rice was not a big deal and now I prefer brown rice. It has much more flavor in my opinion and it keeps me full longer. This has been one of the keys to eating less in the long run (and losing weight as a result).
Speaking of not getting full, cutting cereal was a great idea when it came to weight loss for me. Cereal is such an easy breakfast for me and there are lots of healthy options that I could keep on hand.
The big problem for me was that no matter which cereal I tried, I was hungry less than an hour after breakfast. Even the healthiest of cereals have a good amount of calories, especially for something that didn’t keep me full for more than an hour.
Now, I try to start my day with something that is a lot more filling and offers a better balance of carbs, proteins, and fiber.
5. Anything low fat or diet
I used to love SnackWells and other low-fat or fat-free cookies. Knowing they were low fat or fat-free made me feel a lot less guilty about sneaking a couple of extra ones. However, they never taste really indulgent so I did not really feel all that satisfied with them.
And those right there were some pretty big reasons I stopped eating anything diet or fat-free. Now, I just have the real deal and fully enjoy the taste and richness. Knowing that I’m having real butter and full-fat cookies helps keep me a little more in check.
Fat-free and low-fat foods give you a false sense of eating healthier. They can even make you end up overeating in other areas since you feel like you saved some calories by eating low-fat or fat-free versions. Plus, some of these foods are still full of sugar or other fillers.
Fat is really not the bad guy and can actually help you lose weight by keeping you full and satisfied.
I use to love soda and use to drink it all day long. In fact, soda and ice cream were a favorite combo, which as you can guess, was terrible for my waistline.
While I didn’t indulge in soda and ice cream much over the last few years, I still think this is a big reason for stalled weight loss. Even diet soda can have a negative effect and leave you craving more sweets. I ended up cutting all soda cold turkey and have not looked back since.
Now, I mostly drink water, tea, and coffee as well as carbonated water. Carbonated water, in particular, has been a great substitute for me instead of soda and does not lead me to want more sweets.
7. Foods not worth the calories
Have you ever bit into a cookie only to realize it was too hard? Or maybe it was oatmeal raisin and you were expecting chocolate chip? (that right there – so wrong!) Whatever the reason, we often continuing eating foods we don’t like past the first bite.
If there is something that you try and you don’t like, stop eating it! This has been quite a struggle for me, probably because I was raised with the “clean your plate” philosophy. I always feel very wasteful if I take a bite of something and don’t finish it.
However, eating food you don’t like just for the sake of avoiding waste is a recipe for weight gain. If you don’t like something, don’t eat it. Save your calories for foods that you truly enjoy and then savor them fully.
8. TV dinners
I used to eat prepackaged TV dinners such as SmartOnes(r) and Healthy Choice(r) all the time. I never felt particularly satisfied with any of them but they were such an easy solution when trying to figure out what to eat at lunch.
However, I eventually realized that, in addition to being pretty tasteless, I was not getting full eating them at lunch. About an hour after lunch, my blood sugar would drop and I would go in search of snacks to help fill my now empty belly.
Having a 350-calorie frozen lunch was not that smart when it resulted in me than eating five cookies and a bag of chips an hour later because I was starving.
Now I like to cook and bring leftovers from home. If I don’t have time to cook, I’ll bring a sandwich and/or a salad along with some healthy snacks to keep me full throughout the day. This has helped me plan out healthy meals and eat a more balanced diet since I now bring fruits and veggies for snacks and lunch.
9. All food on my plate
To go off what I mentioned earlier about wasting food, I also used to eat everything on my plate out of habit. And now I no longer feel the need to eat everything that I’m served.
One of the ways I’ve battled that is by just serving myself less food and also by using smaller plates. However, another way I’ve done this when that was just not an option is by dividing my plate in half and telling myself that this is all I really need to eat since there is enough food for two people on my plate.
Then I just get the rest of the food to go or save it for later. Nowadays, I do a much better job of serving myself small portions and only eating until I’m full.
10. Pre-packaged dinners
While I still buy some packaged food, I mostly focus on buying ingredients and cooking healthy and balanced meals from scratch. In the past, I used to buy those frozen dinners in a bag such as beef with broccoli or skillet pasta.
Those things are full of calories and they are not even that good most of the time. I ended up switching from cooking pre-made frozen meals to cooking from scratch. This has been a huge step in the right direction for me as I’ve been able to control what I eat a lot more.
In addition, I can now focus on having a healthier diet and eating fresh foods that taste good and I really enjoy.
What is on your list of foods to avoid to lose weight? Share in the comments.