4 Sources of Hidden Calories and Some Healthy Alternatives


When you want to lose weight the key is to seek out healthy alternatives. This can seem next to impossible in our busy world full of late nights and fast food, but where there’s a will there’s a way. One of the best tools you can have in your arsenal is the knowledge of where some of those extra calories sneak in throughout your day. Here are some of the sneaky ways empty calories can get into our diets and some healthy alternatives that you can choose instead.

1. Soda: Yeah, you’ve heard about this one before. Soda and other sweet drinks are loaded with sugar and empty calories. However, we keep drinking them! A splash of sweetness in the middle of a long day at work can help perk things up a bit, but there are other ways to treat your sugar tooth without drowning it in corn syrup. Try mixing fruit juice with seltzer water for a light, healthy alternative.

2. Office Parties: It seems like every week there’s someone having a birthday in the office. There’s cake, cookies, and all sorts of other ways to wreck your diet. Because these sorts of events aren’t planned it’s easy to just eat and not think about it. To avoid an influx of needless calories, go into these events with a game plan and be a smart dieter. Scope out the options and pick what you like best. Carrot cake not your favorite? Grab a cookie. Eat a small serving slowly and spend the rest of your time socializing away from the food table.

3. Breakfast: Breakfast is a tricky subject. Yes, it’s the most important meal of the day and you should never skip it, but it’s also important to stay on top of what you’re eating. A large bagel loaded with cream cheese gives you a ton of calories without many nutrients to back it up. Instead, go for some protein (eggs are perfect), some fruit, and a small amount of whole grain bread products. Diversifying your breakfast choices will help you hit a number of nutrition groups and will keep you going for longer.

4. Salad Dressing: Salads are great for you, but the dressing’s aren’t always going to be your friend. Take a close look at the packet that came with your salad next time you order one and prepare for your jaw to drop. There are a couple healthy alternatives here. You can go wild with low-calorie vinaigrettes, or you can have a controlled amount of the dressing you like. Try using only a quarter of the portion you think you should have – a little can really go a long way.

Once you get in the habit of thinking outside the box with your food, you’ll start seeing healthy alternatives everywhere!

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