Does getting reduced-fat cheese really matter?
I totally get it. When you’re looking at the cheese section and the reduced-fat cheese is clearly more expensive, it’s tempting to ask “does it really matter?”
There are some “sacrifices” that really pay off when it comes to losing weight.
Unfortunately, choosing low-fat cheese is one of them. When one gram of fat packs a powerful 9 calories compared to 4 calories per gram for protein it can really add up.
While I’m not a fan of calorie counting (for various reasons) I do know that more fat in the diet means more calories, which means slowed weight loss. Let’s compare cheese sticks real quick.
The label on the top is a regular cheddar cheese stick and the bottom is a reduced-fat cheddar cheese stick. It doesn’t seem like a big difference really. Though….it can add up. The reduced-fat cheese can save you 30 calories per stick. If you eat two sticks at a time, you save 60 calories. If you do that everyday for a week, you save 420 calories. It may not seem like much, but simple changes like this can make a big difference!
What other simple sacrifice can you make to improve on your weight loss??
Let’s talk condiments.
Just last night I was making baked chicken using one of my very favorite “Smokey Applewood Rub.” Not only is this meal super healthy, but it was super simple. I rubbed the seasoning on chicken breasts and used my Pampered Chef Deep Covered Baker to microwave it for 12 minutes. I steamed some frozen green beans and seasoned them. Viola! Super simple. Then I was tempted to dip it in barbecue sauce.
But I stopped. I thought about it, and decided this chicken would taste just as good using honey mustard. Note: NOT honey mustard dressing, but honey mustard…from the mustard section. This condiment only had 5 calories per serving. Compare that to the barbecue sauce I had ready to serve which was 50 calories and 12 grams of carbs per serving. And that’s assuming I stuck to the serving size! Instead I didn’t feel bad when I used plenty of honey mustard to flavor my already delicious chicken. I saved 45 calories at minimum…especially calories that were from sugar!
How about one more?
Let’s talk….coffee creamer.
I’m totally a coffee drinker. Coffee in the morning and decaf at some point in the afternoon. Flavored creamers are a weakness! But this week I decided to step up my “A game” and changed a few things.
1) I have been drinking my morning coffee black.
2) I have been drinking hot tea more often.
3) I used “mini moos” for creamer instead of flavored creamers.
Mini-moos are those cute little creamers that you peel back the top and add to your coffee. We have them at one of the offices I work at. These little guys are 10 calories each and are pre-portioned. My favorite coffee creamer is 35 calories per serving. Once again….that’s assuming I stuck to the serving size!
If I had previously had 3 mugs of coffee during the day (regular or decaf) and was using a generous amount of creamer…it could be safe to say I was nearing 150 calories in my coffee creamer. By drinking my morning cup black, drinking herbal tea instead and using 2 mini moos in one of my cups of coffee, I’ve cut it down to 20 calories a day.
For those of you keeping count. By making these changes eating reduced fat cheese sticks and using mustard instead of bbq sauce and greatly reducing coffee creamer. How many calories could I save in a day? In a week?
Answer: I easily saved 240 calories per day…which is 1680 CALORIES PER WEEK! Ahem. While I do not calorie count…I do know if I eat less calories than I burn, that means weight loss. Science tells us 3500 calories equates to one pound. If I were to save myself 1680 calories per week by making simple changes like these, I would lose an extra pound in 2 weeks. On average. This is just a rough estimation and does not take my personal calorie burn into consideration. We’re all different! These changes can add up over time to better weight-loss results, but I can’t put an exact date on when that would happen. We all know that only drives us nutty :)
My intent here is to encourage you that those small changes on choosing the 93% lean ground beef, turkey sausage instead of bacon, low-fat cheese instead of regular…they DO make a difference and that little bit of extra money can mean that little bit of extra weight-loss. Think about it ;-)