6 ‘Healthy’ Foods You Should Cut Back On If You Want to Lose Weight


Hasan Variawa |

These choices may actually be sabotaging your goals
BY CHRIS MOHR, PH.D., R.D.

As a dietitian, I frequently have to analyze a client’s diet and troubleshoot certain areas where they can improve. Often, red flags pop up. When I tell my clients to cut back on certain foods, they sometimes stare at me like, “Huh?” Most of the educating I do focuses on dispelling persistent nutrition myths or poking holes in the “research” behind marketing-generated label claims. Notice I didn’t say that these are foods you should stop eating. No one food is bad or good, but some foods can be detrimental to your health and weight goals when consumed in high amounts.

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#1: EGG WHITES
The egg white trend makes me see red. Whole eggs are one of the least expensive, highest-quality proteins on the planet. Though once demonized due to their high cholesterol, better science now shows that dietary cholesterol has no effect on overall blood cholesterol. Don’t believe restaurants and “experts” who say egg whites are heart healthy and that whole eggs are not.

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#2: NON- OR LOW-FAT PACKAGED FOODS
Fat helps your body absorb nutrients. So when you buy a bottle of non-fat salad dressing, you’re actually consuming fewer nutrients from the greens than if you were to use a little olive oil. Plus, admit it: Non-fat dressing tastes terrible.

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#3: FULL-CARB SNACKS
Crackers, cereal bars, pretzels–these foods offer little nutrition beyond a measly gram of so of fiber, at most. Swap these for snacks that include stomach-filling protein and/or better fibre numbers. Nuts, biltong, apples, cheese, Greek yogurt, berries, and cottage cheese are all good picks.

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#4: PEANUT BUTTER
I have a “friend” who can sit with a jar in hand and mindlessly feed himself spoonful after spoonful of the stuff. Yes, peanut butter (and almond butter, and cashew butter) offers a great source of heart-healthy fats, but PB calories can pile up fast. Limit yourself to two spoonfuls. Then close up the jar and back away. If this seems impossible, give any of the popular powdered peanut butters a try.

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#5: ENERGY BARS
Many of them are nothing more than fortified candy bars—sometimes with more calories. Yes, they’re convenient, but think about packing your snack bag with more nutritious non-perishable options (jerky, nuts, shelf-stable single-serving milks) instead.

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#6: FRUIT-ON-THE-BOTTOM YOGURT
The word “fruit” should be used loosely. It’s more like sugar on the bottom, as some yogurts can have more added sugar than a soft drink. Instead, stick with plain Greek yogurt and add fresh fruit.

Originally published on menshealth.com

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