Today we will be discussing nutrition blunders people commonly make. Do you work out daily and believe you eat right but the scale is not changing or is going the wrong direction? Been there and done that so many times. There are some common mistakes about nutrition that you need to know about, some are very easy to overlook. I have listed a couple of them below.
- Skipping Meals
Some people skip meals to minimize their daily caloric intake. The most common one is usually breakfast. The problem with skipping meals is that, you end up really hungry and by the time you realize this, you gulp up anything in sight and end up eating more calories than if you had just followed your original plan of breakfast, lunch and dinner. Do not skip breakfast; it sets the pace for your day and also helps you function better throughout the day
- Not Drinking Enough Water
Sometimes we confuse thirst for hunger, so you eat a bunch of things thinking your body is hungry meanwhile, it really is just thirsty. Try to drink more water throughout the day, it helps calm you and also keep you full. It also helps minimize bloating. I say minimize cause some people get bloated around that special time of the month or due to some foods.
- Thinking Condiments and Sauces do not Count
The nutritional information for these may sometimes be low, however, once you pack them onto sandwiches, salads or anything, you should take them into consideration. It may appear negligible but it all adds up and eventually will have a negative impact on your progress. For instance you think the salad dressing would not count, however if you take a look at the nutrition information, those dressings contain a lot of calories and fat!
- Setting Unrealistic Goals
Cut yourself some slack! Do not set crazy goals of losing 20 pounds in one week. It didn’t take a few days to get your bodies to their current state, so it won’t just happen fast. Rejoice in the little progress you make daily and take it step by step. Did you avoid soda for a whole week? Give yourself a pat on the back. Did you eat breakfast everyday for a week? Another pat on the back! Love yourself and enjoy how far you have come.
- Depriving Yourself
Depriving yourself of things only leads to failure eventually. If you cut out everything so fast, you will end up giving up and going back to where you started. Slowly reduce or substitute things from your diet. For instance if you love burgers so much, do not immediately cut it out completely and go to salads lol, maybe try healthier versions of a burger like a home made turkey burger. Do not punish yourself.
- Thinking Restaurant Salads are Always Wise Choices
Yes, they are leafy greens vegetables, however many places load them up with bacon, candied nuts, cheese, creamy, oily dressings, croutons or various things that make them attractive but unhealthy. Most times, they end up being unhealthier than getting a burger! Try making your own salads or if you are not great at it, when you go out to eat, be picky, ask them to take out certain things or put them in a separate bowl for you or better still get your salads at a salad bar where you can create it yourself.
- All or Nothing Mentality
Try the 80/20 mentality. If you are consistent 80percent of the time, that’s awesome!! Give yourself a break here and there. Do not have the mentality of thinking just because you ate a bad lunch that you should destroy the entire day and start over tomorrow. Had a bad lunch? So what? Move on, eat a healthy dinner and move on with your life, don’t throw in the towel for the day!
- Not Paying Attention to Your Food Signals
Pay attention to your body especially knowing when it’s hungry or filled up or when it’s craving something sweet, salty or sour. Sometimes you eat something sweet and are still not satisfied; it may be your body craving something salty or different. Also our bodies are different therefore, what works for one person may not necessarily work for you so do not be misled.
- Not Reading Nutrition Labels Properly
Do not pick and choose what to focus on. Do not just focus on the calories. Read and understand the nutrition labels. Look at the carbs, fat, protein, sugar and fiber and even the micronutrients like potassium etc. Also pay attention to the servings per container so you do not consume more that you think you are. Many foods like drinks always look like single-serving packages, when they are actually just about a third or half of the container.
- Drinking Your Calories
Maybe you are eating clean but are you also drinking your calories from beverages? A can of coke can contain as many as 240 calories, which does not seem like much but when it becomes a regular part of your day then it can add tons of calories and sugar to your body and wreck your progress.
- Not tracking all you eat: Sometimes we eat scraps off our kids plates or friends plate or munch on things here and there throughout the day and forget that those also count towards our daily goals. Pay attention to all that goes into your mouth and try to avoid unconscious eating.