If you have been reading my blog you know by now how to figure out how many Weight Watchers points you are allowed in a day. You know Tupperware is a good tool when portioning your food and preplanning meals. Are you wondering yet what you can eat?
I have debated with myself how to introduce food because ultimately with Weight Watchers you can eat anything. If I try to list different foods I will be sitting here typing up food and points all night. Instead, I decided to do a few food highlights.
First, do not think that just because you are “dieting” that you need to run to the store and completely restock your kitchen. So many people have told me they will start their diet tomorrow after they go to the store because they have nothing healthy to eat. That is not necessary and it may be unrealistic for the budgets of some people.
This brings me back to my new outlook on life. Why put off for tomorrow changes you can start right now! What changes to your food can you make right now that will not cost you anything and get you started?
Explore your kitchen
You may be surprised at what you find. Cookies and chips may have had your attention, but what other food do you have that you forgot about buying? Canned vegetables? Eggs? Chicken in the freezer? Tuna? Granola bars? I know personally I have about 50 boxes of oatmeal. Why does the box look so good in the store and then once I buy it the box just sits in my cabinet? You may not believe you have healthy food, but go look. You may have food you have forgotten about that you can use as a substitute until you do go to the store.
Continue with your regular meals but practice your portion control
What meal were you planning on making tonight for your family? Just because you are trying to eat healthier does not mean you have to eat celery and watch the rest of your family chow down on spaghetti. Remember that Weight Watchers is all about portion control. Measure your food and know your points per serving.
Include a vegetable with every meal
With every meal, load your plate with a vegetable. With Weight Watchers, vegetables are ZERO points so you can eat as much of vegetables as you want. If you know you are about to eat a high point meal, eat a bowl (or plate) of your vegetable of choice first to help fill you up before you go for the points. Also we are visual eaters. A 6 ounce steak is 8 points. That’s not very big… put that on a plate by itself and I already know that won’t fill me up. Surround the steak with carrots, green beans, broccoli, or your vegetable of choice, and suddenly you are looking a full plate of food that is still 8 points.
Keep extra food away from the dinner table
If you eat at the dinner table with your family, plate your food and go sit down. Leave the leftover food on the counter, stove, or anywhere that is away from the dinner table. Out of habit and to keep food within easy reach, it is common to place the extra food with us at the table. If you eat at a table with food right in front of you, very likely you will reach for seconds without even thinking about whether you are hungry. We just eat it because it is there, looking and smelling delicious. This goes for any side dishes as well, such as bread. Another benefit to this is getting you moving. Even if you go for seconds, at least keeping the food away from where you are eating will make you get up to get it.
Give your stomach time to tell your brain that it is full. Someone advised through a comment on a previous entry to put your fork down after every bite. Try it! You can also make an effort to chew your food better. Take drinks of water throughout your meal to slow you down. And then there is that old thing called conversation that can fill the time. If you do go for seconds because you feel hungry, wait 15 minutes first. You may find that you are not hungry anymore. If you find you are still hungry, consider seconds of your vegetable or fruit as a dessert. Both will be ZERO points.
Now when you do make a trip to the grocery store, your options are limitless.
Explore the points!
Same with your kitchen, check out the food in the grocery store. As you are learning new food, use the calculator on your Weight Watchers phone app to check the points. For any food, all you need is the carb, fiber, protein, and fat and by using your phone app you can determine the points per food.
If you do not have a phone app, research food before you go to the store. Google food online by typing in an internet search engine, “Weight Watchers points for…” and you will be amazed at how readily available information will be to you. I do this a lot if I eat out. For example, “Weight Watchers points for Applebee’s.” An easy way to know what to research is to look into foods you currently eat that are not healthy and find a substitute. For example, do you love white potatoes? Try sweet potatoes. Love ice cream? Try sherbet or yogurt.
I believe the trick to losing weight and keeping it off is to find your favorite foods and look hard at the nutrition guides to find your best option for that food. For instance, I love ice cream, but do people typically consider that healthy? Of course not, but you have dozens of ice cream to choose from. Pay attention to the nutrition guide and find the right one.
You do not have to eliminate your favorite food! Weight Watchers is about CHOICES and taking steps making better choices. You just have to find out what your options are.
Pay attention to the nutrition labels
Check the calories PER SERVING. You have to pay attention to the serving size. If you look at box of crackers and it says 30 calories, how many crackers can you eat for 30 calories? Also avoid foods that have more than five ingredients and artificial ingredients as it is more processed.
Shop the perimeter
Before getting into the isles, shop the perimeter first. There you will find fresh fruit, vegetables, dairy, meat, fish, and even frozen foods when you get to the other side of the store. Center isles hold all the junk food. When you do go into the middle isles, use your phone app to find the best choice.
Make a grocery list
As I said before, plan ahead for success. Fill your grocery list with fruit, vegetables, whole grains, dairy, lean meat, fish, beans, nuts, poultry. Give yourself a variety. Sticking with your list will help prevent you from grabbing the Oreos just because they look really good. If you feel tempted to grab them anyway, ask yourself “Do I really need that?” No you do not. When that doesn’t work and you put it in the cart anyway, look at the nutrition labels and make the best choice.
Do not go to the grocery store hungry
I have not read this anywhere, but personally this works for me. When you are hungry, you want a quick fix. If you go to the grocery store hungry, not only will you spend more money, but EVERYTHING looks good because you’re starving! Eat before you go and make healthier choices.
It appears my theme of the day is CHOICES. Know your points. Pay attention to what you eat. Be aware of your options. Educate yourself so you make healthy choices. Even if you are going for a box of cookies, knowingly picking a box that has less calories or less fat is making a healthier choice. Set yourself up for success by knowing your options. Finding better options for your favorite foods will help you keep the weight off because you are giving yourself options for LIFE… not temporary options that will eventually end when your diet does and result in you straying back to your old food and gaining the weight back.