Place Your Focus on
What You Want to Eat

Written by Sky Taylor, Diet Bites

Tips for the Dieter's Meal Plate - How to Reduce Calories

Aren't you tired of hearing, 'Don't eat this and don't eat that?'  It's time to place the focus on what you want to eat rather than what you have to avoid.

Let's try a diet experiment.

Enjoy the Foods That You CAN Have While Dieting Rather Than Being Frustrated Over Foods You Can't Have On Your Meal Plate

The next time that you go out to eat, or if you are dining at home, or even if you are planning your meals in advance, rather than placing your focus on the foods that you can't have, place your focus on the foods that you want - the foods that you enjoy eating.

For example, the dinner table is spread with a lettuce and tomato salad, whole grain hot rolls, fried chicken, mashed potatoes with butter, country gravy prepared with milk and green beans that have been seasoned with strips of bacon.  A hot apple pie rests innocently on the corner of the table.  

Your favorites include the fried chicken and the apple pie but you know that both of these foods are not exactly diet-friendly and because they contain more fat than you'd like them too, it's going to be hard to wedge them into your caloric totals for the day.

If you really think about it, most of the other foods aren't exactly diet-friendly either because they've probably been covered with insecticides at some point before they were plucked from Farmer Jone's garden. Nonetheless, the salad and green beans would be considered wiser diet choices over the rest of the menu.

The potatoes, gravy, green beans, hot rolls and salad will add a considerable amount of calories to your meal, especially if salad dressing and croutons are added to the salad, and extra butter is added to the potatoes and the roll. Depending upon how these foods are prepared, the calorie count may range from 500 calories (and that allows for one roll) to over 1,000 calories.  

The 'What You Want' Calories

One slice of hot apple pie contains about 300 calories. One small fried chicken breast contains about 300 calories. Rather than enjoying the foods that you're not so fond of, enjoy the foods that you want.  Add a small salad with light dressing to your meal which will add a healthier mix to your choices. Or, add a serving of green beans.

Being able to enjoy the foods that you want to eat is important not only to the success of your diet BUT also to the quality of your life. Being able to enjoy the foods that you want to eat also helps you remain on your weight loss plan.

This article isn't to say that we give a big thumb's up to chowing-down on fried chicken and hot apple pie every day.  But there are times when it makes perfect Diet Sense to go for the food choices that you enjoy rather than forcing foods into your body that you just really don't like.

Food Makeovers for Dieters - Salad, Fried Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans & Rolls

The foods on the menu can be made a lot healthier by making a few changes.

Fried Chicken: We can transform fat from cooking oil into minimal fat by pan or oven roasting the chicken. Or, we can cook it on our grill. All of these cooking methods add unique flavors to the chicken without adding fat calories.

Side Salad: We can ramp-up the nutritional values of our lettuce and tomato salad by adding baby spinach, sliced cucumbers and shredded low fat cheese.

Mashed Potatoes With Butter: We can cut the butter and use low fat or skim milk when we mash the potatoes. We can allow everyone to season their own mashed potatoes at the table with salt, pepper and reduced fat margarine.

Whole Grain Rolls: These are fabulous as they are and do not need any alterations.

Green Beans Seasoned With Bacon Strips: While the bacon adds flavor to the green beans - we can do without it and add reduced fat margarine to the beans once they reach the table, if desired.

Hot Apple Pie: We can make this a healthier selection by using a top crust and omitting the bottom. Or, we can serve the apple pie filling with reduced fat whipped cream (15 calories a serving) or low fat whipped topping. If we prepare the filling with fresh apples and sugar substitute, we can save even more calories.


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