Food cravings that wreck your diet

The drive-thru is convenient after a hectic day but once you are there, can you resist that milkshake or other treat? And if you allow yourself the ease of fast food once, it could become a habit. According to one long-term study, people who ate fast food more than twice a week gained 10 more pounds than those who had it less than once a week.

When shopping for food at the super market, keep in mind that if it doesn’t go on your trolley, it doesn’t get to your plate. Resist the temptation to make bad choices at the super market.

Here are some of the bad choices you could make if you give in to your cravings:

 

Ice Cream

People who get cravings tend to have higher BMIs — no surprise since fattening foods are often the object of desire. The combination of cool, creamy, and sweet makes ice cream an irresistible treat — but a costly one in terms of calories and carbohydrates of the bad kind (sugar!).

 

 

Potato Chips

It is the combination of salty and crunchy that gives potato chips their allure. Depending on the flavor, a 1-ounce snack bag has at least 150 calories. Munch your way through a large 8-ounce bag and you’re looking at 1,230 calories — not counting any dip.

 

 

Chocolate

Most women crave chocolate on a regular basis. There have been many theories to explain why, ranging from magnesium deficiency to mood swings. But one thing is certain: Downing a candy bar is a quick way to add a couple hundred extra calories to your day.

 

 

Popcorn

Sometimes a setting can trigger a craving, like the desire for popcorn at the movies. Memory plays a big role in cravings — you’ve enjoyed popcorn at the movies before, so you expect to again. Popcorn itself can be a healthy snack, but movie theaters tend to pop it in unhealthy oil and topped with high calorie sauce. The result: 400 to 1,200 calories per tub!

 

 

Donuts

If you are dieting, donuts are like the forbidden fruit. That fact alone may be enough to trigger a craving. Research suggests that a yo-yo pattern of eating favorite foods one week and putting them off-limits the next can intensify cravings. If you are really having a craving, better to have just one bite than to put it off-limits completely. The trouble with doughnuts is they offer very little nutritional bang for the caloric buck.

 

 

 

Pizza

Pizza is America’s favorite food, according to an Oxfam survey. It does have some health benefits: A typical slice has 12 grams of protein and 2.5 grams of fiber. But pizza also has about 280 calories a slice — more if you add processed meat toppings – so the calories add up quickly.

 

Pasta

Pasta ranks among the top five favorite foods in many countries. The trouble is most people eat white pasta, which is made with refined flour. White pasta has only a fifth the fiber of whole-grain pasta, which means it may take more to fill you up. Pasta sauces can be diet-killers, too. A large bowl of fettuccine Alfredo has 800 to 1,200 calories.

 

 

French Fries

Want some fries with that? This salty side is hard to turn down when ordering at the drive-thru. But a large order of fries can have as many calories as a burger — about 500 at a typical fast food restaurant.

 

 

Nuts

Whether at a bar or party, it’s easy to keep dipping your hand into the nut bowl, but all those handfuls add up. A cupful of roasted mixed nuts packs more than 800 calories.

 

 

Lattes

Coffee cravings may go beyond your typical food craving, thanks to the addictive powers of caffeine. You may feel you can’t fully wake up without your morning dose. Fortunately, coffee has very few calories — until you load it up with cream and sugary syrups. Large flavored lattes and mochas can have more than 400 calories.

 

 

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