Saturday, October 3, 2015


by Mary Kennedy
Saboteur: someone who destroys or damages something deliberately. When you think of a saboteur, you picture someone deadly, menacing, dangerous. But if you were your own diet saboteur? Is that possible? Is it possible to derail your diet with muddled thinking and poor food choices? Here are a few "lies we tell ourselves" when it comes to dieting and healthy eating.

1. "I eat healthy." Um, okay, maybe you do, but are you watching the total calorie count of the healthy foods you eat? One innocent-looking bowl of granola can contain 400 calories!
2. "It's a special occasion. I have to celebrate!"
      Maybe so, but did you know one piece of birthday cake has 396 calories? Your birthday only comes once a year, but are you "celebrating" a lot of other people's birthdays? (and anniversaries and graduations and christenings and weddings...)
  3. "I exercise, so I can get away with the occasional treat." The sad truth is that exercise may not burn as many calories as you think. Here are a few depressing examples.                                                      
Three Oreo cookies contain 160 calories. Considering that most people burn off 100 calories by walking a mile (this number varies by how fast you walk and how much you weigh), you would have to walk a mile and a half to burn off this tasty treat.
Another fun fact. A Krispy Kreme glazed donut contains 190 calories. You would have to mow the lawn for 26 minutes to burn it off.
And pepperoni pizza? One slice equals 324 calories. Hope you're in the mood for a bike ride because it will take 30 minutes to burn it off.
Potato chips are another way to wreck your diet. No wonder they say, "You can't eat just one." You would have to exercise for 12 minutes to burn off the calories in 15 potato chips.
The key of course, is moderation. And also awareness. A recent study showed that when college cafeterias started posting calorie counts on foods (along with how much exercise it takes to burn them off), students started making healthier choices. You can, too! No need to be obsessive about it. Just stop and think before you reach for that "treat." As one of my friends always says, "Check yourself before you wreck yourself." If you're going to indulge in something that falls into the "junk food" variety, make sure you make healthier choices the rest of the day. And sneak in a quick walk that evening. Everything can balance out, but you have to plan carefully.
Good luck!!
Mary Kennedy

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