These 10 Foods Are Sabotaging Your Weight-Loss Goals Slideshow
May 17, 2017
Your foodie favorites may be holding you back
Foods Sabotaging Your Weight-Loss Goals
The most unassuming foods are the ones mostly likely to sabotage your weight loss goals. Their innocent ingredient lists and modest preparation makes these foods appear healthy and diet-friendly, but this is sadly not the reality.
It looks innocent enough, but starting your day off with an egg and cheese sandwich is setting you up for a diet disaster. The egg and cheese on a bagel from Dunkin’ Donuts has 470 calories, 25 percent of your recommended daily allowance for saturated fat, and 40 percent for sodium — and that’s without any meat. Add on a sausage patty and you’re looking at almost 700 calories before the day even really starts. You’re almost better off just having a coffee and a doughnut.
The individual components of a burrito — beans, rice, pico de gallo, shredded cheese, meat — aren’t very threatening. But when wrapped together in a six-inch flour tortilla and topped with sour cream and guacamole, they add up to a ton of calories. Even if you use fresh ingredients and simple cooking preparation, a typical burrito is easily 1,000 calories. But don’t despair; by avoiding the flour tortilla you easily shave 300 calories off of your burrito order. Of course, you can always make burritos at home with these amazingly healthy and delicious burrito recipes.
Don’t be deceived: Although it is a salad, the ingredient list of a Cobb reads like a deconstructed chicken club sandwich. Yes, there’s lettuce instead of bread, but the salad still includes bacon, chicken, and blue cheese. According to estimates by Livestrong.com, an average Cobb salad is over 600 calories with 43 grams of fat, making it hardly a diet food. Other indulgent salads loaded with Caesar or ranch dressing should also be consumed with caution.
No pizza is healthy — after all, it’s just dough, cheese, and sauce — but fast-food pizza reaches another level of gluttony. A small cheese pizza from one of the leading brands equals 1,080 calories, 36 grams of fat, and more than 100 percent of your recommended daily allowance of sodium. The high salt content and low dietary fiber makes it difficult to eat just one or two slices.
An iced Frappuccino is the perfect drink for a hot summer day, but it won’t necessarily keep you hydrated, and it definitely won’t keep you slim. A 16-ounce Caramel Frappuccino with whipped cream and whole milk contains 420 calories, 9 grams of saturated fat, and 66 grams of sugar.
Granola used to be the poster child for the alternative food movement, the breakfast of choice for holistic doctors, Seventh-day Adventists, and the hippies of the 1960s. But these groups would not be able to recognize the current iteration of granola because of all the added sugars and processed ingredients. What was meant to be textured, chaste, and restrained, is now sweet, indulgent, and caloric. Thankfully, granola is easy to make at home, enabling you to control the sugar content.
Instant ramen may have been named by the people of Japan as their greatest invention of the twentieth century, but it’s far from the healthiest. Despite being a small quantity of food, a standard, individual pack of ramen contains 400 calories, 14 grams of fat, and 66 percent of the daily recommended allowance for sodium. Since the instant noodle soup provides no fiber and very little protein, you’re almost guaranteed to still be hungry after you eat it.
Many popular protein bars have a nutritional profile that reads like any other junk food, but the way they are packaged and marketed makes them appear to be perfect for the active, athletic, and health conscious. These bars are usually around 250 calories and can contain up to five teaspoons of sugar. They also aren’t especially effective at keeping you full. When shopping for nutrition bars, look for clean labels absent of any alternative sweeteners, brown rice syrup, or sugar alcohol.
Although noodles are consumed in some form in cultures all around the world, pasta made from durum wheat doesn’t offer much nutrition. Pasta is traditionally served with either a tomato- or oil-based sauce and is usually topped with cheese and either meatballs, sausage, or a meat-based Bolognese sauce. According to livestrong.com, a tiny, four-ounce serving of spaghetti with red sauce contains 463 calories; a sprinkling of shredded Parmesan cheese adds another 100 calories.
Sweetened Iced Tea
Tea is celebrated throughout the world for its beneficial health properties and cultural significance, but when it’s loaded with sugar or high-fructose corn syrup, it’s transformed into junk food. Many packaged iced teas market themselves as a healthier alternative to soda, and as a result, sell larger bottles. A 23-ounce can of Arizona Iced Tea Lemon Flavor contains a whopping 72 grams of sugar. These drinks are especially popular with kids because they only cost 99 cents; but with no screw-on top, these cans of iced tea are usually consumed in one sitting.