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Remove These Six Foods from Your Diet Plan ASAP

Remove These Six Foods from Your Diet Plan ASAP

As you go about your diet plan, one thing that’s very important is that you take a look at all the foods you’re eating and make sure that they stack up with your nutritional requirements. One big mistake that some people make as they go about a diet program is failing to take into account the nutrients in their food and how this food is going to influence how they feel and function; instead, they simply focus on the total calorie level and it if matches their needs for the day, that food is as good as eaten.

While calories will dictate whether or not you lose weight, you also need to carefully assess the influence the food will have on how you feel, because if you feel miserable on your meal plan or are hungry all day long, chances are you won’t be sticking with that diet as you should. Let’s walk you through six of the top foods that you may be eating right now that need to get the boot from your diet plan.

1. Granola Bars/Energy Bars

The first of the foods on the list to get the boot is granola or energy bars. While these may seem like a wise quick snack option in times of need, don’t be fooled: most are loaded with sugars, are high in simple carbs, and incredibly low in protein. This is not a good combination as far as your diet plan goes. Furthermore, these foods will often only make you hungrier after you eat them and will not serve as a complete meal or snack, so virtually, all they’re doing is destroying your progress.

Sure, they may only be 100-150 calories, but you’d really be better off eating a 250 calorie snack that had some protein in it.

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2. Convenient Frozen Dinner Meals

The second of the foods to get the boot from your diet plan is any frozen dinner meals you might be consuming.

Here again, these may be calorie controlled, but they are typically lacking in dietary fiber, protein, and may not provide much in the way of nutrients either. They also often contain pasta, which is a processed source of carb and just not ideal. Additionally, the sodium content in these meals can be through the roof, which will only increase the amount of water you retain.

Forgo frozen dinner meals entirely. If you need to eat on the go, start cooking up larger batches of food yourself when you prepare your meals and then freezing the leftovers for later use. This is a far smarter way to do things and will give you the nourishment that you need.

3. Fruit Juice

Fruit juice is yet another item that many people are consuming on a day-to-day basis that is not going to work in their favor in terms of getting lean and healthy and staying that way.

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This one often fools people because it is made with real fruit, so they think that it must be healthy. The problem with fruit juice, however, is that it’s incredibly calorie dense, so you’ll be taking in far more calories than if you would have just had a piece of real fruit and in addition to that, it’s also lacking in dietary fiber.

This is not a good combination as far as results are concerned—just have a piece of real fruit and a glass of water if you’re thirsty.

4. “Whole Grain” Cereal

If you regularly start your day with whole grain cereal, you’re being fooled. Take a look at the ingredients in that cereal and more often than not, sugar will be among the first listed. Many whole grain cereals go in disguise because the marketers behind them want you to think they’re healthy and trick you into eating them regularly.

Don’t be so gullible. Read the nutritional information so that you can see for yourself how these stack up. If they aren’t providing you with a good dose of fiber per serving and have fewer than 3-4 grams of sugar per serving as well, they are not a food to put into your body.

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5. Fruit-Flavored Yogurt

Fruit-flavored yogurt is the next thing to consider removing. While there are a few variations that will be okay, for the most part, fruit flavored yogurt is code word for sugar-infused yogurt. Once again, read the label here to see just how much sugar is in that small tub of yogurt you are having as a snack. Most easily contain 10 grams or more. If this is the case, reconsider that yogurt entirely.

You’d be far better off opting for Greek yogurt instead, which hardly contains any sugar and is the smarter and healthier option to get your dairy in.

6. Baked Goods

Whether it’s whole wheat bread, whole wheat bagels, or some other baked food that you are eating, these too need to be removed from your program plan.

The main issue with baked goods is that even if they don’t contain all that much sugar because you’re choosing wisely, they still contain wheat, which is very processed. This is going to set off a number of reactions in the body where your insulin level shoots way up, which will only cause hunger to set in shortly after.

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While there is some dietary fiber in whole wheat bread, it often isn’t enough to offset this chain of events. Instead, focus on whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa, and barley—these are the carbohydrate sources that you want to eat because absolutely no processing has gone into them.

So there you have the main foods that you should reconsider having in your diet plan if they are present. Think twice about adding them and you will be all the better because of it.

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Last Updated on November 9, 2020

10 Real Reasons Why Breaking Bad Habits Is So Difficult

10 Real Reasons Why Breaking Bad Habits Is So Difficult

Bad habits expose us to suffering that is entirely avoidable. Unfortunately, breaking bad habits is difficult because they are 100% dependent on our mental and emotional state.

Anything we do that can prove harmful to us is a bad habit – drinking, drugs, smoking, procrastination, poor communication are all examples of bad habits. These habits have negative effects on our physical, mental, and emotional health.

Humans are hardwired to respond to stimuli and to expect a consequence of any action. This is how habits are acquired: the brain expects to be rewarded a certain way under certain circumstances. How you initially responded to certain stimuli is how your brain will always remind you to behave when the same stimuli are experienced.

If you visited the bar close to your office with colleagues every Friday, your brain will learn to send you a signal to stop there even when you are alone and eventually not just on Fridays. It will expect the reward of a drink after work every day, which can potentially lead to a drinking problem.

Kicking negative behavior patterns and steering clear of them requires a lot of willpower, and there are many reasons why breaking bad habits is so difficult.

1. Lack of Awareness or Acceptance

Breaking a bad habit is not possible if the person who has it is not aware that it is a bad one.

Many people will not realize that their communication skills are poor or that their procrastination is affecting them negatively, or even that the drink they had as a nightcap has now increased to three.

Awareness brings acceptance. Unless a person realizes on their own that a habit is bad, or someone manages to convince them of the same, there is very little chance of the habit being kicked.

2. No Motivation

Going through a divorce, not being able to cope with academic pressure, and falling into debt are instances that can bring a profound sense of failure with them. A person going through these times can fall into a cycle of negative thinking where the world is against them and nothing they can do will ever help, so they stop trying altogether.

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This give-up attitude is a bad habit that just keeps coming around. Being in debt could make you feel like you are failing at maintaining your home, family, and life in general.

If you are looking to get out of a rut and feel motivated, take a look at this article: Why Is Internal Motivation So Powerful (And How to Find It)

3. Underlying Psychological Conditions

Psychological conditions such as depression and ADD can make it difficult to start breaking bad habits.

A depressed person may find it difficult to summon the energy to cook a healthy meal, resulting in food being ordered in or consumption of packaged foods. This could lead to a habit that adversely affects health and is difficult to overcome.

A person with ADD may start to clean their house but get distracted soon after, leaving the task incomplete, eventually leading to a state where it is acceptable to live in a house that is untidy and dirty.

The fear of missing out (FOMO) is very real to some people. Obsessively checking their social media and news sources, they may believe that not knowing of something as soon as it is published can be catastrophic to their social standing.

4. Bad Habits Make Us Feel Good

One of the reasons it is difficult to break habits is that a lot of them make us feel good.[1]

We’ve all been there – the craving for a tub of ice cream after a breakup or a casual drag on a joint, never to be repeated until we miss how good it made us feel. We succumb to the craving for the pleasure felt while indulging in it, cementing it as a habit even while we are aware it isn’t good for us.

Overeating is a very common bad habit. Just another pack of chips, a couple of candies, a large soda… none of these are necessary for survival. We want them because they give us comfort. They’re familiar, they taste good, and we don’t even notice when we progress from just one extra slice of pizza to four.

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You can read this article to learn more: We Do What We Know Is Bad for Us, Why?

5. Upward Comparisons

Comparisons are a bad habit that many of us have been exposed to since we were children. Parents might have compared us to siblings, teachers may have compared us to classmates, and bosses could compare us to past and present employees.

The people who have developed the bad habit of comparing themselves to others have been given incorrect yardsticks for measurement from the start.

These people will always find it difficult to break out of this bad habit because there will always be someone who has it better than they do: a better house, better car, better job, higher income and so on.

Research shows that in the age of social media, social comparisons are much easier and can ultimately harm self-esteem if scrolling becomes a bad habit[2].

6. No Alternative

This is a real and valid reason why breaking bad habits is difficult. These habits could fulfill a need that may not be met any other way.

Someone who has physical or psychological limitations, such as a disability or social anxiety, may find it hard to quit obsessive content consumption for better habits.

Alternately, a perfectly healthy person may be unable to quit smoking because alternates are just not working out.

Similarly, a person who bites their nails when anxious may be unable to relieve stress in any other socially accepted manner.

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7. Stress

As mentioned above, anything that stresses us out can lead to adopting and cementing an unhealthy habit.

When a person is stressed about something, it is easy for bad habits to form because the mental resources required to fight them are not available[3].

We often see a person who had previously managed to kick a bad habit fall back into the old ways because they felt their stress couldn’t be managed any other way.

If you need some help reducing stress, check out the following video for some healthy ways to get started:

8. Sense of Failure

People looking to kick bad habits may feel a strong sense of failure because it’s just that difficult.

Dropping a bad habit usually means changes in lifestyle that people may be unwilling to make, or these changes might not be easy to make in spite of the will to make them.

Overeaters need to empty their house of unhealthy food, resist the urge to order in, and not pick up their standard grocery items from the store. Those who drink too much need to avoid the bars or even people who drink often.

If such people slip even once with a glass of wine, or a smoke, or a bag of chips, they tend to be excessively harsh on themselves and feel like failures.

9. The Need to Be All-New

People who are looking to break bad habits feel they need to re-create themselves in order to break themselves of their bad habits, while the truth is the complete opposite.

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These people actually need to go back to who they were before they developed the bad habit and try to create good habits from there.

10. Force of Habit

Humans are creatures of habit, and having familiar, comforting outcomes for daily triggers helps us maintain a sense of balance in our lives.

Consider people who are used to lighting up a cigarette every time they talk on the phone or eating junk food when watching TV. They will always associate a phone call with a puff on the cigarette and screen time with eating.

These habits, though bad, are a source of comfort to them, as is meeting with those people they indulge in these bad habits with.

Final Thoughts

These are the main reasons why breaking bad habits is difficult, but the good news is that the task is not impossible. Breaking habits takes time, and you’ll need to put long-term goals in place to replace a bad habit with a good one.

There are many compassionate, positive and self-loving techniques to kick bad habits. The internet is rich in information regarding bad habits, their effects and how to overcome them, while professional help is always available for those who feel they need it.

More on Breaking Bad Habits

Featured photo credit: NORTHFOLK via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] After Skool: Why Do Bad Habits Feel SO GOOD?
[2] Psychology of Popular Media Culture: Social comparison, social media, and self-esteem.
[3] Stanford Medicine: Examining how stress affects good and bad habits

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