Are you looking to lose weight? Have you gained the ‘stay-at-home’ 15? Losing weight isn’t easy, but if you pay attention to what you eat, you may be surprised at the weight you can lose. Simple choices like replacing ultra-processed foods that come out of bags, boxes or cans can make a big improvement to your diet.
More specifically, you can shed weight by reducing 500 calories a day, or about a pound’s worth of calories each week, all while eating the same foods you love.
Most Americans get nearly 60 percent of their daily calories from eating processed foods. We took a look at a study conducted by National Institute of Health which studied the differences when people eat processed foods versus unprocessed options
Results Are In:
Participants spent two weeks indulging in ultra-processed foods, resulting in gaining about a pound of weight each week. They then spent another two weeks eating the same exact foods, but this time they were unprocessed. The results showed a loss in weight of about a pound each week when unprocessed foods replaced processed foods.
To do this for yourself- try avoiding foods in the ‘middle’ aisles of most grocery stores. Many of these foods may be your favorites- but this is exactly where extra calories lurk.
Undeniable Health Benefits:
While the meal prep time increased by an average of 15-20 minutes, the health benefits far outweighed the processed options. Not only did they lose up to a pound each week, but their overall health improved greatly. Lower cholesterol levels, lower sodium levels, increased energy, and overall mood were some of the benefits reported.
The best part? The participants all noted that they found both diets to be equally delicious! They also reported they preferred to continue with the healthier options rather than the ultra-processed options.
Misleading Nutrition Labels:
While it may be easy to fall victim to misleading nutrition labels claiming to offer “fat-free” options, this is far usually far from the truth. Next time you hit the grocery store, skip the frozen dinners and chips- opt for a healthier, do it yourself version from the produce section. Your health and waistline will thank you!