Ever heard of the 70/30 rule? It basically states that successful weight loss is 70% what you eat, and only 30% exercise... Just let that one sink in for a moment!
There is some good news here. While it's not so easy to slog it out at the gym, it is really simple to change our eating habits and cut out the worst offenders throwing off our diets.
So, how can you get the body you're working towards faster this new year?
Turns out, there are 6 foods you should avoid at all costs for the most consistent results:
6. EMPTY CARBS
“Empty” carbs are those found in foods and beverages that don’t come with other macronutrients or vitamins. They're very quickly digested, and fact that they're not paired with any ingredients that make you feel full or nourish your body makes you naturally want to consume more of them.
Furthermore, these empty carbs are the worst offenders when it comes to cravings! Classic examples are alcohol, soda, candy, sweet tea and processed fast food that doesn't have any proteins or vitamins in the mix.
When watching your waistline, switch out empty carbs for better wholegrain options and unsweetened drinks wherever possible to avoid that "constantly hungry" feeling.
5. DRINKS THAT HAVE CALORIES
Sodas aren't the only drink that should be on your radar when you're looking to trim down. It's easy to forget that liquids also come packed with calories - and the tricky part is remembering to remember!
Give some thought to the drinks you enjoy regularly, and whether they should remain an "everyday" thing, or become a treat for special occasions. Juice, wine, beer, sports drinks and various coffees all pack a punch in the calorie stakes that you probably didn't factor into your daily allowance.
If you need to shock yourself out of your daily caramel frappuccino or chardonnay habit, just look up the nutrition panels and check out how many calories you've been blindly sipping on every day!
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4. MORNING PASTRIES
That morning muffin looks innocent enough - but unless you're an experienced baker, you'd hardly believe the amount of sugar and butter that goes into those badboys!
Danishes and croissants are often worse, with pounds of fat or shortening used to create the flaky, buttery pastry layers that melt in your mouth.
When your sights are set on weight loss and health, your morning meal should be sacred, and packed with nutrient-dense ingredients that fill you up until lunchtime.
Our pro tip? Just think of breakfast pastries as what they really are: cakes and desserts, and they'll be a lot easier to resist!
3. WHITE BREAD
If you have a typical modern diet, odds are you eat plenty of bread. Luckily, you don’t have to cut your favourite carb out entirely if you want to meet your New Year’s goals. However, you should swap out white bread for wheat bread wherever possible.
Why? In a nutshell, white bread is more refined and has added sugar more often than not. Eating it can cause your blood sugar levels to spike and your body to store extra carbs as fat.
Grainy wheat bread can be even more delicious than flimsy white bread, plus it keeps you feeling satisfied for much longer.
2. GLORIOUS DEEP FRIED POTATOES
Ahh, potatoes. We love them in all their forms - but the worst starchy offenders for your trimming down efforts are, without a doubt, the most delicious.
We're looking at you, hot chips and crisps. Coupled with the fact that they're incredibly moreish, it can be tough to stop at just a handful once you pop one in your mouth!
If you can't kick your potato habit completely, be sure to indulge at home with shallow-fried alternatives. This way, you can cook up your spuds in a small amount of healthy olive oil and avoid the trans fats, crazy sodium content and chemical coatings sprayed on commercial fries and chips.
1. CHEAP PIZZA
As with all things in life, you get what you pay for - and the same is true with pizza from big chains and greasy delivery joints. They're loaded up with cheap ingredients, salt, chemicals and excessive cheese as a filler; all piled high on a dense, thick base of calorie-packed dough.
While it's critical for your weight loss efforts to treat yourself every now and then, be sure to have a local gourmet woodfired pizza place on speed dial instead.
Artisan pizzerias are more likely to offer thin-crust homemade dough, real healthy toppings and a tasteful amount of premium mozzarella (that doesn't ooze grease like their cheap and nasty competitors!)
All in all, cutting out these foods and replacing them with healthier alternatives – along with practicing a good exercise regimen – will ensure that you meet your New Year’s goals for losing weight and building muscle throughout 2022. All the best!
Justin | Greens Steel Lifestyle Contributor
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