Who couldn’t afford to drop a couple of calories from their daily diet? If you’re snacking on leftover Halloween candy or getting ready to partake in Thanksgiving or Christmas feasts, I’m sure you know exactly what I mean.
North Americans overeat. You can see it when you walk down the street, sit down at a restaurant, or take a look at obesity, heart disease, and diabetes rates. Extra food leads to extra weight, which seems to boost inflammation and contribute to all kinds of chronic illnesses.
But cutting just 500 calories per day can make a big dent in weight gain, inflammation, and health risks. Here’s how you can save calories every day to contribute to a healthier, lighter life:
- Swap snacks: I’m sitting here looking at two Halloween-sized chocolate bar wrappers, but I could have eaten 10. The two gave me 80 calories combined. Because I know could have kept going on those empty calories and never satisfied my hunger, I decided to opt for an apple. Sure, it was 120 calories, but now I’m not hungry anymore. Other calorie-conscious snack-swaps include popcorn for chips and almonds for candies.
- Cut one high-calorie treat: As you go into the holidays, saving calories can be as easy as cutting one treat per day. Instead of having some pie and ice cream for dessert, maybe have a half slice of pie without ice cream. Planning on a burger and fries for lunch? Stick with the burger and ditch the fries.
- Leave the seconds on the serving plate: At holiday meals, everybody goes back for seconds. Heck, most do it every night of the week! But sticking to one serving can cut calories in a heartbeat with minimal effort. One trick to make it easier is to pack away leftovers immediately. Another is to make your plate and leave the rest in the kitchen, not even bringing it out to the table. Forced portion control goes a long way!
- Eat calories, don’t drink them: Specialty coffees, fruit juice, soda, energy drinks, and alcohol are all loaded with calories. Avoiding these and sticking to water or unsweetened beverages can help you save calories in a hurry.
Cutting 500 calories per day is pretty easy and can go a long way for your health. Give these tips a try and see for yourself!