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4 of the Worst Foods to Eat When You’re Trying to Lose Weight

4 of the Worst Foods to Eat When You’re Trying to Lose Weight

Although physical activity has many proven benefits, new studies reveal that eating right is the foundation for successful weight loss.  For instance, if you reduce your daily calorie intake by 500 than you expend you are going to create a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories in a week which will lead you to lose one pound. On the other hand, if you aim to lose the same amount of weight in a weeks time through exercise alone, you have to walk everyday for about 3.5 hours at a speed of 2 mph. Hence, it is justifiable to say that watching what you eat is a lot more effective than working out if you aim to lose weight.

Eating right could mean different things to different people. But generally, it means eating healthy, balanced meals as suggested by the USDA Food Guide. More specifically, eating right means letting real, natural foods such as vegetables, fruits, and proteins as well as complex carbohydrates make up most of your daily food intake.

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The 4 worst foods when you’re trying to lose weight

All the while, you should be avoiding foods that offer empty calories or no nutritional value. There are a lot of these types of food out there — but here are some of the worst.

1. Soda

Soda is said to be the leading source of empty calories. It is filled with nothing but sugar and offers absolutely no nutritional value. In short, it fills your body with a great deal of calories but zero nutrition. If you drink soda on a regular basis, you will be susceptible to gaining weight. See for instance, a can or 330 ml of Coke contains around 160 calories. This means that if you drink one can of Coke every single day, you will end up with 4800 extra calories or 1.4lbs at the end of a month and 57,600 extra calories or 16.8lbs in a year.

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    2. Alcohol

    If you want to lose weight fast, you need to stay away from all the booze. Like soda, alcohol also contains only empty calories and has no nutritional value. It does not in any way satisfy your appetite or give you the feeling of fullness, so it does not keep you from eating less food but still adds a sizable amount of calories to your diet. They also have this tendency of loosening up your resolve to lose weight and make you eat without thinking. And lastly, being a depressant, alcohol slows down your metabolism. Drinking a can of beer is like gulping down the same amount of calories you get when you eat 3 whole apples.

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    3. Trans Fat

    Trans fat, which is found in many fried and processed foods, is said to be the worst form of fat. Studies reveal that a person whose calorie consumption is composed of 8% calories from trans fat is bound to gain 7.2 percent increase in body weight in 8 years time. Trans fat does not only trigger weight gain but also cause fat from other regions of the body to be transferred and stored to the abdominal region. The best way to avoid trans fat is to keep away from processed food. When buying products, check the label or ingredient list for words like partially hydrogenated, hydrogenated,  high stearate, and stearic rich.

    4. Refined Grains

    Basically, refined grains include white flour, white bread, white rice, white pasta and their derivatives. These are what nutritionists often label as “bad carbohydrates.” They are termed as such because they are mostly responsible for many people’s weight gain and are also associated with many degenerative diseases. Refined grains are stripped of their fiber and nutritional contents as they are processed, leaving only sugar, starch and an enriched taste. Starch and sugar tend to get converted to fat and stored in the body; hence, making people fat. If you want to lose weight without totally eliminating grains from your diet, go for whole grains or whole grain products.

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    Featured photo credit: Refreshing Brown Soda via Shutterstock and inline photo by Dov Harrington via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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    Last Updated on December 2, 2018

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

    The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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    The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

    Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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    Review Your Past Flow

    Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

    Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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    Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

    Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

    Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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    Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

    Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

    We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

    Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

      Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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