You are feeling so good about yourself today because of your smart choice of having a salad instead of that cheeseburger that was calling your name. You almost feel sorry for yourself!
Wait! Before you shove that forkful of calorie-laden salad in your smug mouth, let’s review some all-too-common diet blunders that can sabotage your diet.
Yes, they are filled with pretty vegetables, beans, and fruits. However, if you plan to scour the salad bar for lunch, plan wisely. These are often traps for your waistline. Items you should avoid include cheese, avocados, olives, pasta salad, croutons, and yes, salad dressings. All these items on your salad can quickly increase your lunchtime calories to that of a cheeseburger and fries.
If you are going to eat a salad, shouldn’t it be good for you? Load up on dark green lettuce, lots of colorful vegetables, beans, and some grilled chicken. Squeeze a little lemon on your salad for dressing, and you will be surprised at how delicious this is. If you must have the salad dressing, get it on the side, and just dip your fork into it before each bite. This will save hundreds of calories.
Mexican food is a favorite around the country, and for good reason. It tastes fantastic! However, there are a few traps you need to avoid when going to dinner at these places. The chips are fried and covered in grease! Stay away from them at all cost! Tell the waiter to not bring them to your table if you cannot keep your hands from them.
Any entre that includes tacos, refried beans, or chimichangas should be avoided. Opt for chicken fajitas, with no extra sour cream or cheese. Load your tortilla up with onions, bell peppers and chicken, top with salsa and you will think you’re in heaven.
Fish always sounds healthy, doesn’t it? Beware, though! Anything fried is not good news for your waistline. The added trap is the extras that come with the fish, too. Coleslaw and fries are both not good for you and filled with fat, cholesterol, and calories.
When going to a seafood restaurant, order the fish grilled. Get a side of steamed or grilled vegetables, and don’t be afraid to ask the waiter how your food is cooked. Stay away from the bread, too. All those extra calories you were saving by having grilled fish and vegetables will be out the window with one cheesy biscuit!
Sugary sodas are definitely a trap for some people. One can of Coke is over 100 calories! Have you ever run on a treadmill to find out how long that takes to work off? Too long! Stick with diet sodas, or the best choice, water.
Alcohol is another trap to be wary of. One margarita can top out at over 450 calories. One! If you must have a drink, have a glass of wine or one light beer. Most are less than 100 calories, and studies show these provide some health benefits.
Hidden calories are littered all over our normal diets, and you just need to be conscious of where they might poke their heads. Reading food labels at home is a good way to get familiar with calories. Most restaurants have nutrition guides online so you can be prepared before you go out to eat. Don’t let those extra calories sabotage your diet. You will win!