Snacking on nuts or trail mix seems like a healthy choice. But if weight loss is your goal, these comparison photos posted by Leanne Ward, a sports dietitian known as the_fitness_dietitian on Instagram, show why a healthy snack like trail mix could actually cause you to gain weight.
Leanne wrote, "So many of my clients can't understand why they can't meet their weight loss goals but this picture demonstrates that even healthy foods can be over eaten." If you eat nuts straight out of the container or grab handfuls of trail mix without measuring, a "snack" could quickly equal the amount of calories in a small meal! Instead of grabbing a big handful of nuts, dried fruit, or trail mix, try a calorie saving swap such as mixing a smaller portion with some air-popped popcorn. It'll feel like a larger portion but for fewer calories!
Here's Leanne's tip: "If you're trying to lose weight, I recommend weighing or measuring your portions for a day or two to see how much you may 'overestimate' without even realising." She said foods like nuts, nut butter, seeds, avocado, and dried fruit are healthy foods, but are also quite energy dense (i.e., high in (good) calories). If losing weight is your goal, don't eat them mindlessly! Know what an appropriate portion size is of these energy-dense foods and stick to it!
"You can still enjoy all your favourite things as part of a healthy lifestyle but understanding quantities & portion sizes can help you achieve your goal," she reminded her readers. Keep measuring cups, spoons, and a food scale on hand just to be sure!