“Dr Malik you are disappearing!” were the words of a patient of mine back in May. That is when I realized my healthy eating plan was working. It is incredible how many complex solutions there are to weight loss, when the answer is so simple. Let me help you narrow it down:
The answer is not exercise.
And the answer is not diet either.
The answer is: quality food intake. What does this mean?
Before I write a complex answer, here is a great video which helps explain:
This video helped explain something I noticed personally over the past few years. Eating more calories while going to gym did not lead to weight loss. In fact it led to weight gain, and not the hearty muscle type but rather the body fat type. In addition,my sugar intake was ‘normal’, the thought was I could burn the extra calories away at the gym. This did not happen. I remember I topped the scale at 205lbs on December 26th 2016. I remember the day because that was when my brother-in-law mentioned an app called myfitness pal. This app helps keep track of the calories you take in per day, and recommends healthy foods. I decided to give it a try. By April I was down to 175lbs.
I started logging in my calories every day. It was a real eye opener. Here is a list of some of the foods I was eating at the time, and how I gradually substituted them for better options:
|Tims Hortons steeped – tea 2 cream 2 Sugar x 2/day||150||Tims Hortons steeped tea – 1 milk 1 sugar – 2/day||50|
|Tim Hortons Chocolate Chip Muffin||420|
|Whole grain bagel with herb and garlic cream cheese||421||2 scrambled eggs with fruit||182|
|Tim Hortons – Boston Cream||200||Homemade mango smoothie with almond milk||268|
|Chicken Shawarma plate with rice||910||Subway 6inch Tuna with all veggies no sauce||480|
|Veggie pizza (2 slices) with caesar salad||920||Salmon with mashed potatoes and asparagus||457|
|Dessert (cake/ice cream)||350||Bowl of fruit||62|
|Total Calories||3371||Total Calories||1499|
|Excess Calories||1371||Excess Calories||-501|
The one thing that struck me while I used the app was how many bad calories were being added so easily by poor food choices. One of the foods that struck me the most was a simple timbit from Tim Hortons. Each timbit contains 90 calories! Not to mention the added sugar. I remember mentioning this to a patient and he said “I can eat a whole box in one sitting!”
Consider this: 5 timbits can equal to a Salmon dinner with mashed potatoes and veggies!
The bottom line is, good food choices are more nutritious and contain fewer calories. Bad food choices have much more calories and sugar, which in turn can cause many health issues. To help maintain good weight you need good food. Good food will help keep you full for longer, give you more energy, help stop sugar cravings and reduce your chance of diabetes and heart disease.
Here is a quick quiz, can you guess which food has more calories? The results may surprise you!
I hope this information will benefit you as it did for me. Change can be gradual, make a custom food plan and try to implement it. Within no time you will see the results too! Good luck!