Secrets to Burning Fat Faster -Part I
- Friday, 09 October 2009
As a trainer, I have come across many clients not seeing the results they strive for. They work out several times a week with plenty of cardio and can feel their muscles getting stronger but for some reason, they are not experiencing their desired leanness. This seems to be a widespread problem.
What is the deal? The culprit is the dreaded four letter word - our DIET.
“Diet” does not have to mean writing down and measuring out everything you eat, or testing a latest diet fad that involves only liquids. It simply means making a daily decision to choose better food options. Many people get into the habit of eating food that appears healthy, but is not in reality. Below are some tips to avoid the common mistakes people make when trying to eat healthy along with some known facts about the products we consume.
Read the list of ingredients not just the Nutritional Information box
The best way to be truly healthy inside and out is to be conscious of the ingredients you consume. One rule of thumb: the fewer ingredients listed and the more ingredients you recognize and are able to read, the better the product.
Do not pay too much attention to the fat and calories listed. Food made up of natural ingredients is likely to contain good fats and good sugars. For example, avocados have a high fat content, but are rich in monounsaturated fats, which are good for you. There is a distinction between good and bad fats. As well, sugar from fresh fruit as opposed to from high fructose corn syrup will translate differently in your body.
Examining fat and calories can be very deceiving, therefore be shopper savvy and read the ingredient list. Watch out for the following ingredients in processed products that may be contributing to your weight loss plateau:
high fructose corn syrup
carmine (frequently used in yogurt, fruit drinks, and sweets)
sodium nitrate (a highly carcinogenic ingredient - linked to many types of cancers)
any ingredient you cannot easily pronounce
Note the order in which the ingredients are listed
Ingredients are listed in order of weight, which can often translate into the first listed representing the highest quantity. For example, if you purchase an item supposedly loaded with cranberries in the hopes of boosting immunity, yet cranberries is listed at number five on the ingredient list, this indicates that there are in fact not many cranberries in your product. In this case, clever marketing would have gotten the best of you. Popular trail mix products often sway prospective buyers. The label will say almonds, cashews, macadamia nuts, brazil nuts, and peanuts. When you examine the ingredient list more closely, peanuts are listed first while brazil nuts are all the way at the bottom. Unfortunately, the peanut is one of the least healthiest nuts. They are filler nuts and often littered in seemingly healthy looking products.
There is similar deception with drinks that seem healthy, such as the low fat varieties, with no calories and reduced sugar. Even green teas can fall into this category. These drinks have high fructose corn syrup as their first ingredient, and are just as bad for you as a high-sugar ‘fruit punch’.
Choosing your juice
Juice products may also be deceivingly marketed as healthy. When choosing juice, look for the following in both the ingredient list and labels:
Percentage of juice: Choose juice beverages that contain 100% juice. Added ingredients other than 100% juice are unhealthy.
Watch out for concentrates: Many juices are from the fruit, but they are concentrates, which means that all of the water has been squeezed from the whole juice. Juice is typically concentrated so it will have a longer shelf life, just like when you dehydrate fruit. The issue is that a concentrated juice is not as fresh as a juice not from concentrate; you loose the life of the fruit juice you are consuming. You will not receive full health benefits if the juice is concentrated.
Be sure to read the label: Many rare or seasonal fruits such as pomegranate, blueberry and acai will almost always be from concentrate. If you do choose a juice blend from concentrate (such as one of the above listed ingredients), try to find one in which the concentrated juices are listed at the end of the list rather than the beginning. This will ensure you receive the freshest juice possible.
Check for other added ingredients: They should be at the bottom of the list after all the fruit
When it comes to juice and weight loss goals, avoid juice and opt for the actual fruit. Eating the whole fruit gives you fibre and more nutrients than the juice alone.
Avoid GMO’s in fresh foods
Genetically Modified Foods (often called genetically modified organisms or GMOs) are hiding in fresh produce at every local grocery store. Check the codes on the produce. If it was grown conventionally (not organic), the code will begin with the number 4. Organically grown will begin with the number 9. If it begins with an 8, it is a genetically modified food.
To reach your weight loss goals, fill your plate with vegetables and become shopper savvy. Stay tuned for more tips and secrets about the food you consume!