At its most basic level, losing weight comes down to calories in calories out. This means the calories you eat must be less than the calories that you burn; therefore, losing weight can be really challenging considering that the best tasting foods are often very high in calories. This goes double if you are someone who loves food as much as I do!
I love cheese, pasta, rice, red meat, Cheetos, cake, did I mention cheese!? Plus I hate vegetables. You see how dieting seems to not be suitable for me? BUT IT STILL IS!
My husband and I started using MyFitness Pal to count calorie intake. He lost 70lbs in one year and I lost 20lbs in just 4 months.
CALORIES IN FOOD
Choosing the right foods that are low in calories might be challenging. However, once you find food that you enjoy, is nutritious, and low in calories, you will find it easier to lose weight. Below are some ideas of low-calorie food per 100 grams raw unless noted differently:
- Broccoli: 34 calories
- President Choice Skyr Icelandic Yogurt 0% M.f.: 74 calories
- Egg whites: 48 calories (63 grams = 1/4 cup = 2 egg whites = 30 calories)
- White mushroom: 22 calories
- Blue cod fillet: 49 calories
- Peanut powder (PB2): 45 calories/2 tbsp.
- Tomato: 10 calories
- Cucumber: 16 calories
- Spinach: 23 calories
- Shirataki noodles: 30 calories/1 package (113 grams)
- Laughing cow jalapeno cream cheese (2 triangles): 45 calories
Below are some foods that are not very high in calories per 100 grams raw unless noted otherwise, but you can still eat them in moderation:
- Bottom round steak: 164 calories
- Chicken breast: 110 calories
- Potatoes: 77 calories
- Brown rice: 111 calories
- Vindaloo cooking sauce (Patak’s Original): 120 calories/125 ml (1/2 cup)
- Banana: 90 calories
You can still eat high-calorie food, but you just have to know how much calories you are consuming and make sure that you weigh your food with a digital food scale. I still ate Cheetos when I lost 20lbs, but I always weighed it and ensure that it will be within my calorie allowance.
CALORIES TO CONSUME
As I mentioned previously, losing weight means that calorie intake must be less than calorie expenditure. This is called a calorie deficit. Calorie deficit varies from person to person due to gender, age, height, and activity level. You can see how much calories you should be eating per day with this calorie counter: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-many-calories-per-day.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Women and men should at least eat 1200 calories and 1500 calories daily consecutively to function optimally. It’s unhealthy to go below the minimum.
Definitely avoid deep frying anything. There are 120 calories of 1 tbsp of oil which is more than 100 grams of raw chicken breast. Use an Actifry which you can use to fry french fries, amongst other food to fry, with only 1 tsp of oil. You can also bake, grill, broil, steam, etc. The point is to use very little to no oil/butter at all.
WHAT TO CONSIDER WHILE DIETING
Dieting is always hard, especially you have to omit some food from your diet. Here are a few tips for counting calories:
- Choose low-calorie food, but still nutritious.
- Don’t go below the minimum calorie intake per day.
- Do not starve yourself. This will lead to binge eating.
- Drink a lot of water. When you feel hungry, sometimes it’s just your brain saying that you are dehydrated.
- If you need to drink something with taste, drink some tea. Don’t drink juice or soda because it’s high in calories. You can drink carbonated water if you crave a fizzy drink.
- Eat enough protein since protein keeps you full longer. Egg whites and fish are my to go source of protein.
- Have a cheat meal once a week. Don’t go overboard because you don’t want to undo all the hard work you have done during the week.
- Choose wisely when you eat out. Try going to restaurants that have calorie information.
- Plan your meals and dedicate a day to do meal prep.
- When you feel really hungry, it means you are not eating enough of you are eating the wrong things.
- Have snacks between meals.
- Even though you can lose weight without exercising, you should still exercise for your health. Plus, you get to eat more when you exercise :)
- Don’t set MyFitness Pal to lose weight too fast because you want to gradually lose weight with a meal plan that works long term.
There you go! I hope this helps for those who are trying to lose weight. Let’s go through this journey together.