I absolutely love cooking my own meals at home and I encourage everyone to do the same because that puts you in total control of everything that goes on your plate and eventually into your body. However, it can be pretty easy to overdo things in the kitchen without even realizing it.
These small cooking mistakes could be sabotaging your weight loss efforts and progress with your workouts, especially if you are training hard and trying to eat right. Let’s look at some of the common cooking mistakes that could be causing you to gain weight.
Nibbling while you cook
Is this you? do you nibble on food while you cook? If so, you’d be shocked to notice that mindless munching can result in up to an extra 300 or more calories a day, which can easily throw you off your goals and even make you gain weight overtime.
Next time you get hungry while cooking, try munching on low-calorie raw veggies like sliced carrots or cucumbers, or just factor in whatever you munch on while cooking and reduce the amount of food you end up eating after cooking.
Using too much oil
I rarely use oils to cook, but if you do, you really want to be mindful of how much quantity you use to cook at a time, because, oils generally carry a significant amount of calories per serving. Many of us use a free pour method without knowing how much oil we are actually using, and this will definitely ramp up the amount of cumulative calories in your prepared meal.
Try measuring your oil portions out accordingly or per person you are serving or go oil-less once in a while - even better!
Using the wrong sauces
Normally, you wouldn’t just start adding spoonfuls of sugar to your meals right!? but what you might not realize is that most store-bought marinades and sauces can sneak in a lot of extra salt and sugar on your plate. This is why it's very important to learn how to read food labels. Other names typically used for sugar on food labels include, high fructose corn syrup, maple syrup, sucrose, molasses and a host of other names. Next time you go shopping, be sure to check the labels before purchasing any sauces or marinades. Alternatively, you can try making your own.
Underestimating portion sizes
Even if you are eating healthy, consuming excess portions can still prevent weight loss or lead to weight gain. Oftentimes, we are way too generous when serving meals at home, and in order to avoid over eating, I recommend using measuring cups for grains, pasta and rice so you learn how big a normal portion should be. After measuring your portions for a while, you can simply learn to eyeball your portions.
Also don't wait until you are extremely hungry before eating, otherwise you will most likely make rash decisions and eat everything in sight (lol).
If you are still unsure how to serve your portions, try swapping the veggies and starch proportions in your meals, in other words - make the veggies the main attraction.
Flavored syrups and butter on top of pancakes, topping extra cheese to pasta dishes, pouring unlimited volumes of dressings over salads - these are little ways we can end up adding those extra unwanted calories to our meals.
The point is not to eliminate your favorite foods, but instead be mindful of what and how you serve your meals. Now that you’re aware of these small cooking mistakes, it will be much easier to avoid them next time you’re cooking up in the kitchen.
Happy cooking girls! :)
Dreyah, for Every Fit Girl