Top Mistakes To Avoid When Eating Your Favorite Foods

unhealthy salad dressing being poured on salad

In today’s post you’ll see and learn how to monitor and keep extra calories from ruining your favorite dishes. 

Specifically you’ll discover the most common ways individuals like you and I completely destroy the nutritional benefits of our favorite foods without even knowing it.

How Healthy Foods & Snacks Get Ruined

For example, take the following scenario many of us encounter on a daily or weekly basis when eating our salads. (Hopefully your eating healthy greens and salad on a daily and weekly basis)

Imagine that feeling you get every time you make the right nutritional choice and commit to eating a more healthy and nutritious meal. 

Maybe you just got back from your favorite grocery store with a fresh batch of organic spinach and green kale, or perhaps you ordered your favorite salad from your local restaurant.

You might be thinking to yourself, "This salad is so tasty and loaded with amazing dressings, croutons, and fried onions, and now it tastes way better so I don't completely hate eating it." 

Well you see, the ugly truth is these types of salads are most often just as bad for you as if you went out and ordered your favorite double cheeseburger and fries. 

You could be sabotaging your diet without even knowing it. 

But how is this possible?

How Food Brands Hide Calories From You

You see, many companies and brands hide under the imaging of being "healthy foods" but they’re ultimately tricking customers just like you and I into thinking we’re eating healthy snacks or meals.

And this is because it's labeled organic or maybe because it’s purchased from a Trader Joes. 

But honestly, this is far from the truth and here’s why. 

I personally love putting blue cheese salad dressing on my greens everytime I eat them (no, I am not a sociopath). 

Anytime if I’m eating a salad or some carrot sticks for example, I'll pair it with my favorite blue cheese dressing.

I then pat myself on the back for thinking that I’m being healthy while at the same time I gloat to my wife that I am being a health nut. 

Unfortunately, it was an unwarranted pat on the back and I was having incorrect thoughts about being successful in my nutrition. 

The thick, fat glob of blue cheese gets slathered all over my veggies, and includes 129 calories in just two tablespoons! 

And let’s face it, a tablespoon is not a lot of blue cheese.

So I’m far exceeding two tablespoons because I needed 3, 4 or 5 or more servings added to my whole snack to be drenched in the salad dressing I love.

Remember, I am not saying salads, and "healthy foods" are bad by themselves.  

But undeniably, what I am saying is that these added calories of mainly sugar and unhealthy fats is devastating to my nutrition and fat loss goals. 

Two Simple Steps To Avoid Unhealthy Calories 

Now that you’ve discovered the hidden destructive nature of certain snacks and food types, you may be wondering how to avoid making these unhealthy choices yourself.

It all starts with exercising your awareness and also quickly taking the time to read nutrition labels on the backs of your food containers and packaging. 

This will immediately help you understand the amount of calories that go into each of your snacks or meals and will make a mountain of difference to your weight loss goals.  

These two tips help you to make more correct decisions when dressing up your dishes, snacks or salads.

Step One

Tip one - look at the nutrition label on the back of every product. 

By law it’s required to show you the number of calories in each serving size. 

These numbers are very convenient but can be misleading. 

For example, many companies have "90 calories per serving" listed, but here’s the trick. The package contains two servings or more.

Another example is that of Larry and Lenny's complete protein based cookie.  It’s a bigger than average cookie and very common to eat a whole one in a single sitting for a snack or quick meal substitute.  

When I would buy one from the gas station, it would have all the health buzzwords branded big and bold on the packaging. 

"16g of protein", "baked nutrition," "vegan," etc. These deceptive buzzwords get me feeling good and thinking that I’m being healthy when eating this product.

However, once you flip over the package to its back, you’ll discover it says there’s two servings per cookie.

So the 210 calories listed on the back label that I initially felt great about is now double my original plan of what wanted to eat. 

Let’s face it, we're not going to eat just half of the cookie at a time!

Truly, the biggest take away you should be coming away with is understanding the number of real calories that are hidden inside your favorite foods. 

Remember, check what one serving is and make sure you understand that one container may not always equal one serving size.

Step Two

Okay so now here’s tip two - Good news is that it goes in tandem with the first tip of knowing roughly how much one real serving size is. 

It might be a little embarrassing and somewhat funny, but I’m confident I’m not the only one who doesn’t have a clue of how much one tablespoon actually is.

 A spoon is a spoon and it helps me eat ice cream. That’s the extent of my measurement and spoon knowledge. 

But don’t fret, there’s truly good news. There’re hacks to help you determine the approximate serving sizes of  your favorite condiments and foods. 

So here’s the ultra simple and easy to remember system to use when you need to measure any food you’re about to eat.

  • The tip of your thumb to your first knuckle is roughly a tablespoon. 
  • The open palm of your and is approximately 3 oz. 
  • If you cup your hand, it can hold about 1/2 a cup, while a fisted hand is roughly the same size as one cup.  

Now I don’t recommend you simply go and throw away all of  your measuring cups because you memorize the above measuring tips.

We all know measurements and portion size matters.

These fast measurement types are for when you’re out to lunch or picking something up for a quick snack and you’re in a rush.

Honestly, you wouldn’t want to be the person pulling out measuring cups on a dates. In fact, this is probably one of the fastest ways to ensure you don’t get a future date.

Here’s What You Discovered 

I believe we can all agree that being mindful of these additions to healthy foods will benefit your weight loss journey and overall health goals. 

In this post you discovered how many of your favorite sides, toppings and food are not designed for your overall health, fitness and fat loss goals. 

The great news is that you learned about the few ways to use your hand as a way to get quick approximations on measurements. 

You also discovered how becoming more aware by taking the time to read the nutrition labels on the backs of your foods will help you monitors the calories you eat. 

So with today's newly acquired knowledge on how to make a few simple hacks to your nutrition habits, you can empower yourself to commit and level up your overall nutrition goals.