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How to Find the Hidden Fat and Calories in the Foods You Eat Everyday

Ever wonder why people have such a hard time losing weight? Look no further than the way food is presented to us in modern society. Convenience foods, fast-food restaurants and oversized portions have conditioned your body to crave sugar and the immediate burst of energy it provides—even though you don’t need it to live your relatively sedentary life. Luckily, with a little know-how, you can identify the food sources where excess fat and calories reside and avoid them—or better yet, replace them with healthier choices.

Follow this advice to avoid falling into the hidden fat and calorie trap:

Don’t buy in bulk. If you put a large plate of food in front of someone, chances are they’ll clean the plate without even realizing it. That’s why it’s a bad idea to have large boxes and bags of convenience foods hanging around your kitchen—you can easily get into a habit of absent-minded eating or become accustomed to eating larger portions. If you must buy in bulk because you have a large family or you need to save money, divide everything into serving-size bags to keep from overindulging.

Avoid food traps. Back when our ancestors were hunter-gatherers, if they couldn’t collect or kill their food, they went hungry. Now you can practically stumble on food every time you turn a corner. There’s temptation lurking at the gas station, the convenience store, the shopping mall—even in department stores. We live in a time with an embarrassment of food options, and as a result many of us eat our way through the day and pack on unwanted pounds.

To avoid the urge to snack, reduce your exposure. Don’t enter and exit the mall near the food court. Pay for your gas at the pump so you won’t add a bag of chips or candy bar onto your purchase. Put your loose change in a piggy bank every day so it doesn’t find its way into a vending machine. And it’s always a good idea to eat a well-balanced meal or a filling snack before you leave the house so you won’t find yourself hungry when you’re surrounded by unhealthy choices.

Watch out for low-fat or reduced calorie items. Sure, these sound like a good way to eat less, but what often happens is that the missing fats and sugars leave those items less satisfying than their regular versions, and you can eat more in an attempt to make up for the taste you’re missing. It may be better to buy your regular favorites in smaller sizes so you’ll satisfy your cravings without eating in excess.

Don’t let hidden fat and calories sabotage your diet! By following the above advice, you can identify unhealthy food traps and avoid them altogether.

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