Food logging

Getting Healthy: Watch what you eat!

You don’t have to thrash yourself in the gym or run 10 miles everyday to lose weight. Weight loss is 80% diet & 20% exercise. Watching what you eat and cutting out the unwanted carbs and sugars is enough to get started on the path to a healthier you.

Counting Calories

Avoid filling your grocery cart with common junk foods like cookies and chips at your grocery store. Even if you eat out, skip the cookie after your subway sandwich, trade in that soda for a bottle of water. Make small changes in your diet, pretty soon, you will be calorie counting as you see the results on the scale and the mirror. Calorie counting is similar to planning your budget. You don’t go to a clothing store and buy a pair of jeans without looking at the price tag, however great it fits, of course unless you are not fiscally responsible. Being physically responsible is also similar, much like you check the price of the jeans to ensure it fits within your budget, you should check on the nutritional info for a food product before you consume it to make sure it fits within your calorie budget for the day.
For eg., a chocolate chip cookie from subway has 210 calories in it, including 30 grams of carbs & 17 grams of sugars, while a 6″ turkey breast sub has 280 cals/46 gms carbs/7 gms sugars. If you are on a 1500 calorie per day meal plan, would you rather have a 490 calorie meal or a 280 meal? 280, of course, so, you could by simply looking at the numbers, cut your lunchtime calories almost half by eliminating that one cookie from your meal.

Start Logging your food

A good way that has helped a lot of people is to start logging the food you consume everyday. It is really a game changer. You can see when sometimes you consume too much.  For eg., you might love fruit juices, lemonade, milk, chocolate milk, and can easily drink them multiple times in a day. You might think what’s wrong with these things, they are not bad like soda or cake, but if you look at the labels you will realize, that’s easily about 400 – 1200 calories  you are consuming each day and that’s just the liquids part. Instead of these, change to drinking only water, black coffee or green tea.
Once you start logging food, you will see how the calories add up and you are eating 2000-3000 calories per day. New research shows that a person who is used to snacking on handfuls of things like cheese or chocolate candy or chips have stopped doing it when he started logging all the food consumed. Eventually, the cravings for these snacks disappeared!

So the takeaway from the above is:

  • In order for you to lose weight, start watching what you eat.
  • Calorie counting helps you in choosing the right foods and eliminate the bad ones.
  • Start logging your foods, this will help you seeing what you eat and will aid you in cut your cravings.

More helpful tips: Meal prepping, 30 minutes per day.




Low GI foods to drop the pounds

As you are aware by now, for the past few years, there has been lots of research articles highlighting new truths about fatloss and healthier eating. Carbs have become the new enemy, while eating fats in moderation is actually a good thing. Eating lesser carbs is the secret to losing the fat, but all carbs are not bad. Infact, the body does need carbs to run the engines.

So how do you decide which is a good carbohydrate food and which is a bad one. For that one would need to understand how carbs work within our body once consumed. The carbs that we eat comprise of sugars and fibers among other things. Sugar and fiber have different roles in food. Sugars are rapidly absorbed from the digestive tract raising blood sugar abruptly. Fiber slows the absorption of sugars slowing the rate of blood sugar rise. For a regular lifestyle that the average person has, the increase in blood sugar caused by the sugars is not needed by the body for energy. So, all this excess blood sugar will be converted to triglyceride fat in the liver. Once converted, these triglycerides are transported to the fat tissues for storage. When adequate natural fiber exists in the meal slowing the absorption of sugars, the blood sugar rise is spread over a longer time interval allowing energy usage to keep up with energy intake. The net result is that little or none should be converted to fat.

Two foods can be eaten with the identical calories and grams of sugar, yet they result in very different patterns of energy usage versus fat production. Slowly absorbed carbohydrate is termed “low glycemic” load, while quickly absorbed carbohydrate is termed “high glycemic load”.
The high-glycemic meal results in a rapid blood sugar rise in the first hour which results in a high insulin output to lower blood sugar. As the cell requirements are not this great in the first hour, much of that sugar is sent to the liver and converted to triglyceride for fat storage. This happens aggressively in the presence of high insulin resulting in the blood sugar dropping back to the fasting level in just a little over 2 hours. This triggers hunger and thus a desire to eat again sooner.
The low glycemic load meal can contain the same calories and grams of carbohydrate but in a slowly digestible form. The result is a very gradual blood sugar rise, much lower insulin output and complete use of the sugars for energy rather than for triglyceride production. The gradual absorption of sugars over 4 hours sustaining energy levels suppresses the hunger response for a much longer interval.
Remember, these two meals contain the exact same carbohydrate grams and calories, yet they have much different effects on fat production and hunger response. Given this dynamic, what determines and controls the glycemic load of different carbohydrates is important. The simplest and most useful marker is the sugar to fiber ratio.