There are lots of places to avoid when on a diet. In fact, it seems like the entire world, everywhere you go, is out to sabotage you. You never noticed it before, but temptation lurks everywhere, in places you wouldn’t expect! Perhaps it’s best if you know, up front, what are these wicked places to avoid when you're on a diet, and I can help. Whether you’ve been dieting for a while and have stalled, or are getting ready to start a diet, these are the 7 places to avoid when on a diet. Brace yourself!
1. Fast Food Joints
No matter how convenient or cheap you think fast food is, it tops my list of places to avoid when on a diet for one clear reason — it’s loaded with calories, most of them from fat. This goes for cheeseburgers and chicken nuggets alike. If you must eat fast food, for whatever reason, check the calorie count and nutritional content to make sure it’s a good choice… for example, a salad without dressing and without breaded fried chicken and cheese chunks is probably a good choice, but the double-deluxe bacon burger with fries and a soda? That contains all the calories you’re supposed to consume in an entire DAY.
Why are restaurants in general places to avoid when on a diet? Because, no matter what they’re serving, they’re serving way too much of it. It’s true — most restaurants serve about two and a half actual servings in one meal. If you’re aware of this, you might be able to dine out without wrecking your diet. Just ask for half of your meal to be boxed up before it’s brought out… and bingo, you also have lunch or dinner for the next day.
3. Your Mom’s House!
Especially if your mother doesn’t think you need to lose weight, her house is definitely a place to avoid when on a diet! Chances are, she’s always stocked up on the junk food you love best, and she’s ready and willing to prepare your favorite calorie-laden comfort food. I’m not saying you need to break ties with mom til you’ve reached your goal weight, but you do need to avoid her house, or at least her kitchen, until you’ve formed your healthy diet habits… or bring some willpower with you.
4. The Scale
This one tiny device tucked in the corner of the gym or your own bathroom is another place to avoid when on a diet. Why? Because scales are simply not the best way to gauge your diet success. When you first start your diet and workout, you’ll be losing fat and gaining lean, sexy muscle… which weighs more than fat. Also, when you’ve been dieting a while, and hit a plateau, you’ll maybe be discouraged if you don’t see progress on a scale, even though you’re still making progress. Last, scales are different, so unless you’re always using the exact same scale, you’ll be discouraged that you only seem to be losing weight on the scale at the gym, not the scale at the doctor or at home. A better way to measure your success is how your clothes fit, or how you feel.
5. The “Core” of the Grocery Store
Grocery store planners are a clever bunch, helping you stick to your diet without you even realizing it. Almost every grocery store is set up the same: fresh produce, whole grain baked goods, wholesome dairy, and lean proteins are all displayed around the edges of the store, while the nasty prepared foods and junk foods are hidden in the inner aisles. This is why another of the places to avoid when on a diet is pretty specific: the inner aisles, or “core” of the grocery store. Fill your cart with all the goodies around the perimeter, then skip right over those temptation-laden inner aisles and head straight for the checkout.
6. The Coffee Shop
Did you know your favorite mocha latte with whipped cream can have as many calories as a cheeseburger, sometimes even more? They shouldn’t be called “espresso drinks;” they should be called “desserts in a coffee mug.” If you love the coffee shop, and don’t want to dump your barista, opt for black coffee without added cream and sugar, or at least skip the whip and choose low-fat milk for your un-mocha latte.
7. The Concession Stand
Sometimes one small whiff of buttered popcorn is enough to undo all the willpower you brought with you to the movies, but resist! The concession stand is definitely another place to avoid when on a diet, or even just when on a budget, really. Think of how expensive each one of those sneaky little calories is… sometimes one small buttered popcorn, box of candy, and regular soda can contain all the calories of a meal, most of them from fat or sugar, and can cost more than your movie ticket! Yow! If you can’t resist the popcorn, treat yourself to a small bag without the butter.
8. The Bakery
Unless you’re there to buy whole-grain bread, there’s nothing for you at the bakery that isn’t going to wreck your diet, so it’s another of the places to avoid when on a diet. The exception, aside from the whole-grain bread? When you’re indulging, just a little… say, with one small cookie that you nibble and savor.
With so many places to avoid when on a diet, can a girl who’s watching what she eats have any social life at all? Sure! Remember, none of these temples of temptation is without its healthy options… you just have to know what to look out for, and what it’s okay to love! Which of these places has been your dietary undoing? Or is there another place to avoid when on a diet that’s spelled disaster for you? Do tell!
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