Thursday, March 29, 2007

Weight loss savings from simple changes and substitutions

Following up on a previous post, here are some more ideas for simple changes and subsitutions for weight loss:

  • Choose non-fat dairy and that can save about 150 calories a day. Again, this small change can add up to 15 pounds lost over the course of a year.
  • Don’t skip breakfast. Studies show that individuals that eat breakfast tend to eat less throughout the day, saving on average 300-400 calories, compared to non-breakfast eaters. Those calories saved can promote serious weight loss.
  • Switch to lower fat versions of favorite treats. Use baked or fat-free chips in place of regular chips and opt for frozen yogurt instead of ice cream. Again, shaving calories throughout the day will help promote weight loss.
  • Eat slowly. Make every meal last at least 20 minutes. It takes that long for the stomach and the brain to communicate. Gulping down meals means that you eat more calories before the brain has time to signal the full feeling (satiety). Slower eaters can save 100-300 calories at each meal.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Calorie control for business dinners

When it comes to eating out or entertaining clients, follow Audrey’s Rule of One -- enjoy the bread but have only one slice or one small roll and the same goes for appetizers, taste one or two but don't go back for seconds. Desserts can be sumptuous, but they also add major calories to the end of a meal. Following the rule of one, select a dessert you like and order extra spoons to share it with the table. Take a few bites and then pass the plate down for others to enjoy. If sharing is not an option, ask for seasonal fruit and sprinkle with a little Splenda® or skip dessert and opt for flavored coffee (tasty option with Splenda®’s flavor blends for coffee – hazelnut, YUM! ) to the end the meal. Another way to save calories when eating out is asking for the sauce, salad dressing, butter, etc. to be served on the side. That way you can add the amount you want, a little at a time.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Weight loss savings from substitutions – Part 1

The main point is that one pound of fat contains approximately 3500 calories. So people who want to lose weight (excess body fat) need to find simple ways to burn calories and cut calories that add up to 3500 Kcal to lose 1 pound. Here are a few tips that can help increase exercise and cut calories that will add up to major weight loss in the course of a year.

  • Chew sugar free gum and you will cut 36 cal/day and also helps curb cravings for sweets. Cut just 36 calories a day and lose 4 pounds over a year. If the chewing gum helps to eliminate cravings for high calorie deserts (250-300 calories), the extra calorie savings could be substantial and add up to at least 26 pounds lost over the year.
  • Substitute a diet soda for a regular soda and save 150 calories a day. This small change can add up to a 15 pound weight loss over a year.
  • Count your steps. Adding 10000 steps/day is estimated to burn an extra 200 calories per day. In one year, at least 20 pounds can be walked off.
  • Forget the elevator and take the stairs. It is estimated that 10 min of stair climbing burns 150 calories. Try fitting in 3-4, 10 min sessions a day (at work during lunch, or during a coffee break) and that will add up to 450-600 calories burned for the day. Over the course of a week you can lose 1-1.2 pounds.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Friday, March 09, 2007

Cocktail hour

It's Friday and time for us to let our hair down and celebrate with friends. I love cocktail hour for several reasons: great time to network, cute clothes, and fruity drinks with fruity accessories. I don't like the extra calories that come along with those accessorized drinks and the tapas. Here are a few suggestions to lighten up the cocktail hour:

  • Best bet is light beer (no cute accessories) or wine. Each has aprox 100 calories per serving, and that is 12 oz for the beer and 5 oz for the wine.

  • Hard liquor and mixed drinks pack more calories depending on the quality of the liquor and the ingredients in the cocktail mix. Rule of thumb, higher the proof higher the calories, and the creamier the cocktail, think fat and excess calories.

  • If you are hosting a cocktail party, you can lower the calories of mixers by using sugar-free instant drink mixes (Crystal Light is an option), Splenda® sweetened no calorie sodas (Coke Zero, Sprite Zero), and sparkling waters in your libations.

  • Alcohol has downsides and excess calories are only one of many reasons to use moderation when you are mixing it up with "mixers". Remember, the phrase "beer gut" did not invent itself. Our bodies tend to store the calories from alcohol the same way they store fat calories and unfortunately calories from alcohol tend to be stored around the waist.

Enjoy a drink, keep it lower cal and focus on networking and spending time with friends. Avoid the appetizers like the plague -- the smaller the treat = higher the calorie content (usually). Like anything else, balance and moderation are key to being able to socialize sensibly and stick to your healthy lifestyle. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

How to handle stress at work -- Girl Power.

Shift into a Zen state of mind. Accordingly, grab your wall chart of chakra centers in the body, assume lotus position and commence belly breathing. Kidding, don’t do that in your pencil skirt and ‘loes, you will look and feel dumb. Instead, read this very nice study on women and why we are better than men (at least when it comes to coping with stress). My summary is below and a link a related article by Gale Berkowitz and the research follows.

UCLA researchers were discussing differences in how male and female colleagues copped with stress and they found that the women tended to grab a cup of decaf, their best gal pal and vent. Men tended to isolate themselves in their offices, avoid calls and social contact, and work out the problem/stress alone. Why does it matter? The UCLA researchers decided to find out what was going on when it came to dealing with stress. Results: men have 2 responses to stress and these are the classic fight or flight mechanisms; women actually have 3 responses to stress, fight, flight or “circle the wagons”. This third response, unique to the gentler sex (LOL), is part of the reason for women’s longer life expectancy. The instinct to grab a girlfriend and dish when you are red-lining the "stress-o-meter" is based on the release of oxytocin (feel good hormone) in the brain that is released when women share their burdens. Apparently, venting is a tremendous stress reliever and now there is science to prove it. The number of girlfriends you have is also linked to happiness, longevity, and better quality of life. The stronger your bond with other women, the more of those bonds you have, and your ability to maintain those relationships plays an important role in the quality of life. So go out with your girls and dish. You’ll feel better and actually add time to the play clock.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Discount Splenda -- Hello!

CRAZY, randomly came upon this link to the Splenda® product line and you can buy at discount prices...where have I been? Amazon sells groceries? What will they think of next? Sliced bread? Check it out for some savings on the greatest low-cal sweetener!