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Some Easy Ways to Cut Calories

By Rachel Carver

Decreasing your scale number and maintaining weight requires small, sustainable changes. Drastically cutting calories might work quickly, but the weight is likely to return if you loosen tight calorie restrictions.

Research suggests a 300-500 daily calorie deficit for losing weight. Combining this smaller deficit with purposeful movement can set you up for long-term weight loss success.

Try some of these strategies to reduce calories without depriving yourself. Depending on your lifestyle and situation, you might be able to stick with these healthy habits for life.

Use Plain Greek Yogurt Instead of Sour Cream

Greek yogurt can be used in salad dressings, in many overnight oat recipes, and can be a healthier alternative to sour cream on your tacos. Swapping two table spoons of sour cream for the same amount of low-fat Greek yogurt saves you 35 calories.

Snack on Chocolate-Covered Nuts Instead of a Candy Bar

Many candy bars will give you at least 200 calories. One ounce of SkinnyDipped cocoa almonds saves you 50 calories. These almonds are coated in a thin layer of chocolate and are quite tasty. Research also suggests nuts can help prevent weight gain.

Swap a Large for a Medium

Trying to lose weight does not mean you have to give up your Starbucks habit. However, the sugar and calories in gourmet coffee drinks can add up fast. Reduce calories by downsizing your order. Save 70 calories by drinking a medium vanilla latte instead of a large.

Choose Popcorn Over Pretzels

Popcorn is a great snack if you crave something savory. One cup of pretzels gives you 154 calories. Eating two cups of air-popped popcorn sprinkled with one tablespoon of yeast instead saves 77 calories.

Drink Sparkling Water Instead of Diet Soda

Diet soda does not contain the high amounts of sugar and calories as regular soda. However, artificially sweetened drinks have been linked to type 2 diabetes and cancer. An American Journal of Public Health study found that overweight adults who drink diet soda consume 88 more calories from food than those who drink sugary drinks. Sparkling water can give you some flavor without making you crave more sugar.

Reduce Bread

Bread can be hard for some people to completely give up. You don't have to stop eating bread to lose weight. To reduce the calories, assemble a traditional sandwich without the top piece of bread. This saves you 90 calories.

The Bottom Line

Shedding pounds is not a race. Being intentional about what and how you eat can decrease your scale number and improve your health.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Baltimore, Md.

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