We are so lucky to live here in Cuenca, Ecuador, the land of an abundance of interesting and exotic vegetables and a cornucopia of fruits – however, this bounty of produce doesn’t mean that it’s any easier to lose weight and keep it off.  Many have brought their S.A.D. (Standard American Diets) with them – and it’s not hard to understand why – just about everything you can find in American grocery stores is available here in Cuenca.

If your goal is weight loss and better health, but you’re loathe to “go on a diet” because you hate that feeling of deprivation so typical in restrictive diets, try this trick.  Make ONE change each week, and see what happens…just by adding less fat to your food, or substituting a non-calorie beverage for a high calorie one can produce calorie deficits that show up in pounds and inches off.

Make some small changes and see how quickly the pounds can come off.  Small changes in what you eat and drink can have HUGE benefits!

On a baked potato:potato with salsa

Skip the added fat – save 100 calories per pat of butter – replace with 2 tbsp of fresh tomato salsa and…

…realize the potential to save 8-10 pounds of calories per year – by reducing 75 calories per day.


When dining out – you order pasta:

Gourmet fish, Mediterrean style

An entrée of pasta and cream sauce has about 1200 calories! You select grilled fish and vegetables and save at least 400 calories…you are more satisfied from lots of lean protein and fewer refined carbs…

…realize the potential to save up to 12 pounds of calories per year!

 

Your typical breakfast is a bran muffin:

A bran muffin might sound healthy, but they’re typically full of oil and sugar…it can have more than 500 calories, depending on it’s size…because it’s full of sugar, it shoots your blood sugar up, then crashing down, making you feel hungry within just a few hours.

cereal milk berries

Instead you switch to a cup of whole-grain, low sugar cereal, a cup of low or nonfat milk, and a full cup of berries…

…you reduce the calories for breakfast by at least 200, you feel better! There’s a potential for creating a 20-pound weight loss calorie deficit in a year!

 

Your habit is to drink a can of soda in the afternoon – you like that caffeine pick-me-up…

Each 12-oz regular soda has 150 or more “empty” sugar calories – shoots your sugar up, and crashing down again.  Instead, you reach for water, agua con gas, or a diet soda …

Potential calorie savings daily over the year equates to almost 16 pounds of fat – just skip the sweet stuff.

By the way, if you’re watching your calories, that 12-oz glass of juice has as many calories as a 12 – oz soda!  It would take at least 5 or more oranges to make a 12-oz glass of juice – would you peel and eat five oranges in a sitting?  No, you’d be full at 1 or 2.  Skip the juice, drink herbal tea, or water – and lose weight with just a few heorange instead of OJalthy changes. It’s hard to eat an excess of calories from fresh, whole vegetables and fruits, but it’s oh, so easy to quaff calories quickly when you’re drinking juice.

 

 

 

Take a look at your usual diet – and then make it better!  Just a few small changes can pay off big-time.  You can save hundreds of calories daily, thousands yearly just by ditching fried foods and choosing baked, broiled, grilled or sautéed.  Hundreds of calories saved by cutting back on added fats like buttering your bread or over-using salad dressings and added cheese means 10, 20, 30 pounds lost within one year, just by making your choices reflect your goals.