So, you think you’ve had a great week of eating healthy and exercising and now it’s time to step on that scale to see how much weight you’ve lost…..wait for it……..
“NOTHING! I DIDN’T LOSE ANYTHING?!? WHAT?…HOW CAN THAT BE? I DON’T GET IT!!! I KNOW I ATE HEALTHY FOOD, ONLY 3 MEALS A DAY, NO DESSERTS AFTER DINNER, HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE?”
You are not alone. Many people think they have a good idea of how many calories they eat, but most of us only consider or recall the main meals. However, if you think about it and write it down in a food log, you’ll discover those “oh yeah” moments:
- “Oh yeah, I had that package of peanut butter crackers from the vending machine at work this morning.” (220 calories)
- “Oh yeah, my co-worker and I were feeling really tired this afternoon, so we made a Starbucks run and I had a Venti latte.” (240 calories)
- "Oh yeah, I remember when I went to see Sally in accounting she had some M&M’s on her desk so I had a couple handfuls while we were talking.” (100 calories)”
- “Oh yeah, I sampled a piece of garlic bread when I was making dinner, and I had another piece while doing the dishes after dinner." (120 calories).
Once they are counted in a food log, those “oh yeah” moments added 680 calories to your daily calorie intake, leading to the frustration of no weight loss.
Writing down your food intake in a food log throughout the day can help you become more mindful of what and when you are eating and avoid the mindless snacking (M&M’s, garlic bread) and liquid calories (Venti latte) we don’t even realize we are eating. A food log can help you make wiser food choices too.
If you knew you had to write it down:
- You may choose a lower-calorie option from the vending machine or bring a healthier snack from home for the mid-morning munchies. This could save you 100 calories.
- You many choose a different drink at Starbucks, perhaps a regular coffee with cream. This could save you 200 calories.
- You may choose to have only a few M&M’s at Sally’s desk instead of 2 handfuls. This could save you 80 calories.
- You many avoid the extra piece of garlic bread after dinner, especially since you are already full, saving you 60 calories.
So, try the food log tool today! To make it easier, use a free online food log (e.ghttp://www.thedailyplate.com/) or smart phone apps (e.g.http://www.livestrong.com/thedailyplate/iphone-calorie-tracker/) that track the calories for you. You may be surprised at where those extra calories are sneaking in to your daily routine.