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Quick Ideas for Cutting Calories

You don’t have to be on a diet to watch your calories. Learning to calculate your caloric intake is good for you general health.

In a past article about , I shared some details about the $1,200 weight loss program I used to lose some weight left over from having my second baby. Well, since then I had a third baby and I have found myself a little bit too “super-sized” for my standard of health. However, I’m not going to spend another $1,200 to lose 10-15 pounds—this time around I’m doing it for free.

For me it all started with determination, after a crazy busy summer working and going on a vacation, I knew that it was time to look at my calorie intake and tweak a few things here and there. I discovered a free app called Lose It. This app takes your general information, height, weight, gender, age, and how much you want to lose and calculates how many calories you can eat in a day. My goal is to lose 10 pounds and I would like to lose 1 pound a week. According to Lose It, I can eat around 1,700 calories a day and still lose 1 pound a week. So far, it’s working great.

Here are a few quick and easy things you can do to cut calories from your diet, acording to Women's Health.

  • Don’t drink your calories. You can do a 30-minute run and burn 200 calories, walk across the street to the coffee shop and within three gulps of your favorite foamy frappuccino you’re right back where you started.
  • At breakfast, scramble together 4 egg whites instead of 2 whole eggs, replace a glass of OJ with an actual orange, try high-fiber toast with strawberry jam instead of the donut, and if you are ordering pancakes or waffles, skip the butter and syrup and replace it with sugar-free Reddi-Whip.
  • For lunch, hit the protein style (no bun) at In 'N Out, or even better, eat a garden or turkey burger instead of a hamburger, skip the croutons on the salad, and use spray ranch dressing instead of two tablespoons of regular ranch.
  • For snacks, cut down on the portions. If you need something sweet grab a 100-calorie ice cream sandwich instead of a large milk shake. Munch on air-popped popcorn (not the theater kind) and drink water instead of soda.
  • Substitute non-fat Greek yogurt for sour cream and use low-sodium chicken broth to sauté meat and vegetables.
  • If you have to hit fast food, try grilled chicken rather than something breaded or fried. Flour and bread crumbs not only add calories but also absorb more cooking oil.

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also suggest watching your portion sizes. They say, “You may find that your portion sizes are leading you to eat more calories than you realize. Research shows that people unintentionally consume more calories when faced with larger portions. This can mean excessive calorie intake, especially when eating high-calorie foods.”

Just being aware of how many calories you eat in a day can help you stay on track and keep you at a healthy, happy weight.

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