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Food, Food Errors, Food Substitutions, and "Eat This, Not That" Suggestions!
 
   
Basic Weight Loss Mistakes

Secrets That Restaurants Don't Want You To Know

A lot of us are out there watching what we eat and exercising, but still not making a dent in our bellies and body weight. There are a few things we are probably not doing, or doing too much of, that would mean major improvements in our health.

Get more sleep. After a very short period of time (about 6 nights), studies show that your glucose levels can rise if you get only 4 to 7 hours of sleep each night. New parents are excluded, but everyone else should try to hit the 8 hour mark as often as you can and get to bed BEFORE midnight. Every hour of rest before 12 a.m. is twice as valuable as the hours after midnight: Our cortisol levels are lowest before midnight therefore our recovery is the highest.

Eating fewer refined and processed foods. Avoid fast and fried food and try to consume as many real foods as you can. It's also imperative to get enough fiber (helps with elimination); fruits and veggies are a great way to fill up.

Avoid sugary drinks and reach for more water. Water is great for so many things like digestion, eliminating toxins in the body, and transporting important nutrients to our cells which need energy to burn calories. Americans drink 20% of their calories, so be careful of that silent pitfall.

Get to know your kitchen. I realize it takes more work, but the simple truth is we eat out or order in too often. There is a greater opportunity to control what is in your food if you cook it yourself.

Slow down. When you do sit down to a meal, don't wolf it down. Our culture encourages eating while driving or sitting at our desks. The only time we seem to sit down and enjoy our food is at Thanksgiving. The monks chew each bite of food 100 times (which is excessive), but they also eat only until they are full. They recognize that chewing their food more makes it easier for the body to digest.

Breathe. There are so many days that I don't breathe deeply. In the morning, mid-afternoon, and at the end of the day take a 10 conscious, belly-deep breaths. Close your eyes, pull that air deep into your stomach via your nose and let all the junk out through your mouth. Whether its a stressful day, or you just want to start and end your day on the right foot, breathing is important.

Don't starve yourself. Oddly enough some of you may not be eating enough, and the lack of calories is putting your body into save mode. Our bodies are so brilliant, and if they aren't getting enough food, your metabolism will tell your body to store each and every calorie it receives or to make energy from whatever muscle tissue you have. Not good. Oh and by the way, don't skip breakfast. People who skip breakfast are over 4 times more likely to be overweight.

Do more than exercise. Even if you are working out, you can't eat and drink whatever you want. It really is a three sided puzzle: balancing exercise, food, and (oh yes) the spirit (which stress and happiness play into).

I wish you the greatest of success, and remember, being healthy is like making your bed. It really is something we have to work at everyday.


Restaurants have one major purpose: to stuff you with as much food as they possibly can. If they do that, they achieve their primary business goal, which is to lighten your wallet.

But while they’re doing that, they’re also using their best marketing tricks, craftiest numerical switcheroos, and most dastardly dietary stratagems to swap unhealthy, cheap ingredients for more expensive, wholesome ones. The result: bloated bottom lines — for their budgets, and for their customers. But we don’t want to let that happen to you, which is why we’ve spent the last two years researching all the ways restaurants try to sabotage your food choices.

Below you’ll find a sampling of the fruits of our long labor: some of the new secrets the restaurant-chain gang doesn’t want you to know. They’re only a few of the many ways restaurants fatten up their customers for the sales slaughter. Heed the warnings and you (and your family) can make it through the drive-thru alive.

1. Baskin-Robbins doesn't want you to know that.....

Sometimes a drink can have fruit in the title, but not in the cup. For instance, the top four ingredients in its Blue Raspberry Fruit Blast were Sierra Mist soda, water, sugar, and corn syrup. Since we first called the company out on this fruitless horror, Baskin-Robbins discontinued the Blue Raspberry Fruit Blast. The company also began listing all nutrition and ingredient information online. We call that progress.

If you’re looking for a real fruit smoothie, visit Jamba Juice. Just remember to check those calorie counts, so you don’t over-indulge.

2. Papa John's doesn't want you to know that...

Unlike rival chains such as Domino's, it has made little effort to introduce healthier options. After we goaded them on their slow pace of innovation, Papa John's did introduce whole grain wheat crust pizzas last May. Now, if only Papa would toss a thin-crust version into the mix and alter the recipe for sides like cheese sticks, which are loaded down with more than 2,900 milligrams of sodium!

3. Fuddruckers doesn't want you to know...

The fat content of its 1-pound burgers. We contacted our local Fuddruckers restaurant and were told that the nutritional information was available on the chain's Web site (it's not). The corporate office later responded that providing such information would be "very extensive and timely." We're pretty sure he meant "very expensive and time-consuming." How's that for a Freudian slip?

4. Panera Bread doesn't want you to know that...

The synthetic food colorings in its pastries have been linked to irritability, restlessness, and sleep disturbances in children. And British researchers found that artificial food colorings and preservatives in the diets of 3-year-olds caused an increase in hyperactive behavior. The same ingredients appear in fast-food items like mayonnaise, M&M Blizzards, and McDonald's shakes.

On Panera's Web site, you can track down calories, fat, sugar, and other nutritional numbers. If you look hard enough you'll find ingredient lists, too — and note that a few items still contain artificial coloring. Disappointing. If you want to cut out the artificial stuff entirely, head over to Chipotle: The restaurant uses no artificial colorings or flavorings. Just make sure you saw their burritos, which can have more than 1,000 calories, in half.

5. Chevy's Fresh Mex doesn't want you to know ...

How its tortillas stack up nutritionally. The chain says it provides "nutritional information regarding calories, fat, protein & carbohydrates for some of our most popular items" — the chicken, steak, and shrimp fajitas, for example — on its Web site. But the numbers provided don't include the tortilla: an essential component typically bloated with fat and carbs. When we called a New York Chevy’s for more information, a server told us he couldn't find that info on the in-house menu, either, which would seem to be a violation of New York city regulations. He did direct us to the same misleading nutritional information on the company's Web site. Gee, thanks.

6. Applebee’s, IHOP, Olive Garden, Outback, Red Lobster, and T.G.I. Friday’s don’t want you to know ...

The nutritional impact of their dishes. Despite the fact that we continued to pester each company, they all were mum about their nutritional information. So we had it nutritionally analyzed on our own. We may not be in this fix for long, however. New York City regulations that went into effect in July require all restaurants with 15 or more branches nationally to post calorie counts on their menus.

After tracking down every last dish, we can see what they were hiding: At Friday’s, no fewer than nine sandwiches and 10 appetizers topple the 1,000-calorie barrier; at IHOP, the “healthiest” entrée-size salad has a staggering 1,050 calories; and at Outback, even a simple order of salmon will wipe out 75% of your day’s caloric allotment.

For more restaurant industry secrets that will freak the weight right off of you, check out these other dubious restaurant secrets that are being hidden from you!

And lose weight in record time by staying away from the unhealthiest drinks in America! They can be responsible for causing you to gain a few pounds of fat — a month!

And now that you’re aware of the danger, do us all a favor: if you notice other big fat restaurant lies, let us know. Likewise, if you’ve found ways to cut through the fast-food jungle without getting eaten, let us know that, too. When it comes to the battle of the restaurant bulge, we’re all in this together.

---------------------------

Worst 'Healthy' Drinks - And What You Should Drink Instead

Staying hydrated can be great for your body. Drink enough of the right liquids and your mood will improve, your focus will sharpen, your heart will beat stronger, and you’ll be less likely to suffer from headaches and fatigue. All that, plus if you pick the right potions, you’ll receive beneficial nutrients, antioxidants and protein as a chaser.

Bottoms up, right? Not so fast. Some bottles are better than others, as you’re about to learn. Too many Americans are problem drinkers — and I’m not talking about bourbon for breakfast. As a nation, we love high-sugar, high-calorie drinks like sodas and smoothies; a whopping 21 percent of American’s calorie intake comes from drinks, and that’s an increase of 150 calories since 1977. The big-bottom line: Half of that caloric payload comes from sweetened beverages such as soft drinks, fruit punch, and other sweet drinks.

The sad part is: Nobody actually needs any of those calories. Water — by the glass and in the foods you eat — should be plenty to top your tank. But if you find it kind of bland, we hear you. That’s why we’re slapping warning labels on the big-calorie guzzlers, and pointing you toward the thirst-quenchers that won’t make you fat.

Cheers.

Iced Coffee

Drink This
Dunkin’ Donuts Caramel Crème Iced Latte (16 oz)
260 calories
9 g fat
40 g sugars

Not That
Starbucks 2% Iced Dulce de Leche Latte (16 oz)
420 calories
16 g fat
52 g sugars

In the hierarchy of espresso drinks, lattes sit squarely at the bottom. That's because they're more milk than java, and are susceptible to huge pumps of sugar syrup from eager-to-please baristas. A macchiato gives the same caffeine kick for a tiny fraction of the caloric cost by swapping out the excess steamed milk for a crown of frothed milk. It's a simple but meaningful switch for caffeine junkies looking for a healthier fix. For other easy foods swaps for effortless weight loss — without ever having to diet again — try these fabulous fifteen.


Protein Shakes

Drink This
Slim Fast High Protein Extra Creamy Strawberry (11.5 oz can)
190 calories
5g fat
13 g sugars

Not That!
Boost Plus High Protein Strawberry (8 oz bottle)
240 calories
6 g fat
16 g sugars

Besides having fewer calories and sugar than the smaller Boost shake, the Slim Fast drink also has more protein and five extra grams of fiber, which means it will work harder at keeping your belly full in the hours after you sip it.


Yogurt Smoothie

Drink This
Dannon Light & Fit Strawberry Banana Smoothie
70 calories
12 g sugars

Not That!
Stonyfield Farm Organic Wild Berry Smoothie
150 calories
25 g sugars


The Stonyfield smoothie is smaller but more than doubles up on the calories and sugar in the Dannon Light. Don't be fooled by the "organic" name — this yogurt smoothie is thick with added sugars, which spikes your blood sugar and tells your body to start storing fat — not the best way to start your day.

The Dannon Light shake jumpstarts your morning metabolism with a nice protein kick, but spares you the sickly Stonyfield sweetness. Watch out wherever, whenever for added sugars by avoiding this great list of the most sugar-packed foods in America!


Functional Beverage

Drink This
Dasani Plus Orange Tangerine Vitamin Enhanced Water (20-oz bottle)
0 calories
0 g sugars

Not That!
Snapple Agave Melon Antioxidant Water (20-oz bottle)
140 calories
33 g sugars

If you were fooled by the words “agave” and “antioxidant,” don’t be embarrassed — for a product that’s supposedly water, it’s totally shocking how many calories and grams of sugar are packed into this fraudulent “health” beverage. But that doesn’t mean you should run the other way when you see an enhanced water; in fact, adding a little flavor (such as the orange tangerine in the Dasani water) can make staying hydrated easier and more pleasant — without adding calories or sugar.

Bottled Beverage

Drink This
Sobe Lean Blackberry Currant (20-oz bottle)
15 calories
2 g sugars

Not That!
Sobe Lizard Lava (20-oz bottle)
310 calories
77 g sugars

To glance at these two mysterious containers, you might think they contained exactly the same liquid — they’re both pink, they both come in a chunky glass bottle, they’ve both got some kind of creature on the label — but once you take a closer look at the nutrition facts, an entirely different story becomes clear. The Lizard Lava bottle contains about half a meal’s worth of calories and as much sugar as 11 popsicles.

That doesn’t exactly spell refreshment, does it? Instead try the other pink bottle, with Sobe’s Lean Blackberry Currant. With only 15 calories and 2 grams of sugar in a bottle, it just goes to show you that you can’t judge a drink by its bottle. In fact, make sure you’re always on the lookout for things like these sneaky "health" foods that aren’t! You’ll be shocked.


Energy Drink

Drink This
Monster Lo-Ball Java Monster Coffee + Energy (16-oz can)
100 calories
8 g sugars

Not That!
Rockstar Original (16-oz can)
280 calories
62 g sugars

I’ll put it all out on the table here: I’m not a big fan of energy drinks. It’s much healthier to boost energy by exercising, eating healthy foods, and getting enough sleep. But let’s face it — sometimes you’re desperate for a pick-me-up, and it’s easy to reach for one of those shiny cans of liquid fuel.

However, if you guzzle down a can of Rockstar Original, I’m pretty sure you’re just going to end up with a jittery buzz instead of the boost you’re seeking — with 62 grams of sugars, you’re looking at a major sugar crash not too far down the road. Better to stick with a low-sugar, low-calorie option like Java Monster Coffee + Energy.


Juice Imposter

Drink This
Fuze Slenderize Strawberry Melon (18.5-oz bottle)
23 calories
4.5 g sugars

Not That!
Arizona Kiwi Strawberry (23.5-oz can)
360 calories
84 g sugars

Unfortunately, most of the drinks that come in flashy containers and purport themselves to be juice quite simply aren’t. That goes for both our “Drink This” and our “Not That” option here — even the healthier Fuze drink is only about 5 percent juice. That said, it’s also a low-carb, low-sugar drink that provides nutrients, antioxidants, and vitamins, so it’s not all bad — unlike Arizona’s “juice.” Bottom line: These days, if you want juice, you probably need to squeeze it yourself.

Kids' Juice

Drink This
Minute Maid Kids Multi-Vitamin Orange Juice
120 calories
24 g sugars

Not That!
Welch's Grape Juice
170 calories
40 g sugars

Kids love grape juice for one reason: It's loaded with sugar. That also means it's loaded with calories. Grape just ain’t so great. On the other extreme, Minute Maid’s enhanced orange juice is mother nature's multi-vitamin, providing your kids with monster doses of calcium and vitamin D for bone growth and protection, plus a host of powerful antioxidants. To make the best choices for your kids when eating out, check out this great comprehensive listing of the Best and Worst Restaurants for Kids!


Kids’ Drink

Drink This
Capri Sun Tropical Fruit Roarin’ Waters (6.8-oz pouch)
35 calories
9 g sugars


Not That!
Sunny D with Calcium (8-oz serving)
140 calories
31 g sugars

If you believe the commercials, stocking your fridge with Sunny D will make you the coolest mom (or dad) in the neighborhood, and your kids will be smiling and thanking you, and you’ll be wearing a cashmere sweater, and your whole house will be bathed in soft, buttery sunlight. Right. Well, believe it or not, if you’re interested in giving your kids a fun drink that’s actually reasonably healthy, hand them one of those silver Capri Sun pouches — OK, so they’re not exactly a health drink, but they’re better than Sunny D — cashmere or no cashmere.

For other belt-busting beverages, don’t miss these other drinkable disasters. And for other incredible tips to keep the weight off for good, take this eye-opening quiz to learn how much you can eat for just 100 calories.

Have other smart swaps? Please share them with the rest of us here.

--------------------

America's Worst Breakfast Foods

It’s hard to overestimate the importance of eating breakfast. Studies show that people who take time for a morning meal consume fewer calories over the course of the day, have stronger cognitive skills, and are 30 percent less likely to be overweight or obese. Beyond that, people who skip breakfast are more likely to drink alcohol and smoke, and they’re less likely to exercise.

But just because breakfast is the most important meal of the day doesn’t grant you permission to go into a feeding frenzy. But that’s exactly what many of the country’s most popular breakfast joints are setting you up for, by peddling fatty scrambles, misguided muffins, and pancakes that look like manhole covers.

These foods are loaded with unhealthy fats, added sugars, and refined carbohydrates, which catapult your blood sugar, sap your energy levels, and tell your body to store fat.

To help you avoid the morning mishaps, we searched out the good, the bad, and the greasy, and uncovered some of the worst breakfast foods in America. We’ve presented a sampling of the worst offenders below. It’s like a lineup down at the local police station, except in this case, they’re all guilty as charged.

Worst Side Dish
Burger King Hash Browns (large)
620 calories
40 g fat (11 g saturated; 13 g trans)
1,200 mg sodium
60 g carbs

Yes, you’re ingesting more than a meal’s worth of calories from a side dish, but the real cause for concern here is that these little potato cakes pack seven times more trans fats than you’re supposed to eat all day! Until BK learns to cut out the partially hydrogenated oils, avoid encounters with potatoes of any kind at that fatty food joint.

Eat This Instead!
Burger King Egg & Cheese Croissan’wich
300 calories
17 g fat (6 g saturated; 2 g trans)
740 mg sodium
26 g carbs

Worst Breakfast Sandwich
Hardee’s Monster Biscuit
710 calories
51 g fat (17 g saturated)
2,250 mg sodium
37 g carbohydrates

When they say “Monster,” they mean it. This 700-calorie behemoth should be enough to scare anyone: It contains nearly a full day’s worth of sodium and saturated fat. Instead try the Sunrise Croissant with Bacon. It’s not exactly diet-friendly, but if you’re stuck at Hardee’s, it’s a way to escape without too much damage.

Eat This Instead!
Hardee’s Sunrise Croissant with Bacon
450 calories
29 g fat (12 g saturated)
900 mg sodium
28 g carbs

Worst Kids Meal
Denny’s Big Dipper French Toastix with margarine and syrup
770 calories
71 g fat (13 g saturated)
107 g carbs

As important as it is for mom and dad to eat a good breakfast each morning, it’s even more critical that their kids do. After all, breakfast affects their energy levels, metabolism, and performance in school. Better think twice before feeding them these dubious little sticks. For more healthy kids’ choices, check out Eat This, Not That! for Kids.

Eat This Instead!
Kid’s D-Zone Smiley Alien Hotcakes
340 calories
12 g fat (5 g saturated)
49 g carbs

Worst Pastry
Cinnabon Classic Cinnamon Roll
813 calories
32 g fat (5 g trans fat)
117 g carbs

You wouldn’t start your day with three brownies, would you? As far as your body knows, that’s exactly what you’ll be doing if you wake up with this cinnamon-swirled disaster area. In fact, because Cinnabon offers no healthy alternatives, you’ll have to invite friends (or enemies?) to share the risky roll, or steer clear of Cinnabon altogether.

Worst Smoothie
Smoothie King Grape Expectations II (40 oz.)
1,102 calories
256 g sugars
740 mg sodium

Why Smoothie King would even offer a 40 oz. serving size is beyond us. With more than half the calories you need in a day and the sugar equivalent of 12 Haagen Dasz ice cream bars, this “drink” should be renamed "diabetes in a glass." Just goes to show you the importance of drinking responsibly.

Drink This Instead!
Smoothie King Low Carb Strawberry Smoothie (20 oz.)
268 calories
3 g sugars
176 mg sodium

Worst Combo Meal
McDonald’s Deluxe Breakfast
1,360 calories
64 g fat (22 g saturated)
2,325 mg sodium
160 g carbs
49 g sugars

With four vehicles for refined carbohydrates (biscuit, hash browns, hotcakes, syrup), this “deluxe” disaster will send your blood sugar soaring. Why blow nearly an entire day’s calories under the arches, when a perfectly satisfying Egg McMuffin will save you more than 1,000 calories?

Eat This Instead!
McDonald’s Egg McMuffin with coffee
310 calories
12 g fat (5 g saturated)
820 mg sodium
30 g carbs
3 g sugars

Worst Omelet
IHOP Big Steak Omelet
1,490 calories
(No additional nutrition information available)

IHOP doesn’t provide nutritional information aside from calorie counts, but with a boatload of steak, a bucket of cheese, and handfuls of hash browns, this omelet’s fat and sodium numbers are surely just as appalling.

Eat This Instead!
IHOP For Me Garden Scramble
440 calories

The Worst Breakfast in America
Bob Evans Stacked and Stuffed Caramel Banana Pecan Hotcakes
1,543 calories
77 g fat (26 g saturated; 9 g trans)
2,259 mg sodium
198 g carbs
109 g sugars

It’s not a good sign when it takes you nearly five seconds to spit out the name of your breakfast. This bad boy packs in more than 75 percent of your calories for the day, along with more sugar and fat than nine glazed Dunkin’ Donuts, and nearly as much sodium as five Bloody Marys.

Eat This Instead!
3 Scrambled Egg Beaters with 2 slices of bacon and fresh fruit
314 calories
19.5 g fat (5 g saturated)
700 mg sodium
21 g carbs
18 g sugars



- - - - - - - - - - - - -
Reference: Men's Health!
 Buy your Invisible Truth Kindle eBook on Amazon here.


 Buy your Invisible Truth Kindle eBook on Amazon here.


 Buy your Invisible Truth Kindle eBook on Amazon here.
   
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Juice Fasting  
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