When you’re following a medical weight loss plan, you will of course restrict your calories so that your body is forced to burn off fat stores for energy. But when we view our eating plans from a perspective of restriction, the entire program can feel more limiting and less motivating. That’s why we try to focus on the positives of healthy foods. When you fill up on healthy foods, you won’t have as much room for the unhealthy stuff.
But that mentality can only go so far. Yes, it is possible to eat too much of a healthy food, or “too much of a good thing.” All foods have calories, so even when they’re packed with beneficial nutrients you don’t wnat to overdo your portion sizes. This is especially true for what we call “healthy fats”, or unsaturated fats. A little bit goes a long way, nutritionally speaking, and larger servings can prevent your medical weight loss plan from working well.
So yes, even though we definitely encourage you to eat these foods, you must be wise about your portion sizes!
Avocados. They’re full of potassium and fiber, and help to lower your risk of diabetes and cancer. But one medium avocado contains about 240 calories, so you can’t exactly enjoy an all-you-can eat guacamole buffet.
Nuts. Nuts represent another one of those “good” fats. And because they’re small, crunchy, and salty, it can be easy to get carried away. But resist the urge to munch on nuts like you would chips, just because they’re “healthy.” One cup of nuts can contain about 800 calories!
Trail mix. We think of trail mix as a healthy snack, and some varieties can be. But remember trail mix can be packed with nuts (see above), dried fruit sweetened with corn syrup (yikes), and sometimes even things like chocolate chips. More than a handful can add a lot to your daily calorie total.
Protein bars. These might be a way to meet your protein goals for the day, especially if you’re very busy between work and gym time. But check the wrapper carefully. One protein bar can contain a lot of sugar or added fats that greatly increase the calorie count.
Gluten-free foods. Sometimes we see “gluten free” on packaging and assume that means “healthy.” But many packaged gluten-free snacks are actually higher in calories than their regular counterparts!
The bottom line is always moderation. We want you to enjoy your eating plan and consume foods that carry signficant nutritional value. But be careful, because there really is too much of a good thing sometimes! For more information on appropriate portion sizes and the right daily allotment of calories to help you meet your medical weight loss goals, call us to schedule an appointment.