Thought for the Day--March 15, 2011: Is this Diet Heresy?

Here is something that might give you pause and could be considered diet heresy, but I'm going to put it out there for you to consider:
Do NOT measure or weigh 0 PointsPlus foods.
Yes, you read that right: Do NOT measure or weigh 0 PointsPlus foods.

0 PointsPlus food values have been established by Weight Watchers (TM), and, basically, includes all fresh fruits and canned fruits (in their own juice) and most vegetables (excluding the starchy ones, such as potatoes, corn, and peas).

Simply use common sense and a good eyeball to estimate weights and measures. If you have been a serial dieter, then you have weighed and measured your food thousands of times--you know what you know--so why not offer yourself a break and simply stop measuring and weighing 0 PointsPlus foods?

Do this experiment: Take some strawberries from their container and place what you think is a serving into a bowl. Now place them in a measuring cup. If your guesstimation is close, then you are ready to put away the measuring cups and scale for 0 PointsPlus foods. Overall, you will be close to the correct measures, and, over time, you will do fine.

For two months now, I have been guesstimating my 0 PointsPlus foods, and I'm doing just fine, losing about five pounds a month, which I think is sustainable for my current weight and age. Most importantly, it removes a burden from my arsenal of tools. However,
I still track 0 PointsPlus Foods!
Yes, I continue to write them down, but I don't include weights or measures.

You are an intelligent person and (hopefully) have figured out that eating three large apples in one sitting will not serve your body right and actually encourages you to continue your overeating habits.

And we're all here to change bad habits, no?

Also, there are some sneaky 0 PointsPlus foods that are 0 PointsPlus because a portion is so low in carbs that they're negligible at best. But if you double the portion, it's another story, indeed. Here's an example:
Magic Pop (made from wheat, brown rice, and corn)

Stats for one portion (According to the Weight Watchers calculator, 0 PointsPlus):
Calories, 15

Total Fat, 0g

Total carbs, 4g

Fiber, 0g

Protein, 0g
However, if you eat TWO portions, according to the Weight Watchers calculator, now it will be 1 PointsPlus:
Calories, 30

Total Fat, 0g

Total carbs, 8g

Fiber, 0g

Protein, 0g
So if you eat two or more servings of Magic Pop, they now have points attached to them and must be counted toward your daily totals.

If eaten indiscriminately, Magic Pop can easily become a danger food, given its yummy, crunchy, and carby aspects. If you eat more than one in a 24-hour period, then you should include and track that as a point or more.

So portion control IS important, even with 0 PointsPlus foods; fortunately, Magic Pop does not need to be weighed or measured.

But if you are eating one carrot or one apple at a time, why would you need to measure or weigh it? Just track it.

But if you are obviously eating more than one unit, then note that in your tracker.

If you are eating a pound of cherries or strawberries all at once (and, deep down, you'll be aware of this), then you may be falling back into old overeating habits.

Definitely continue measuring and weighing your PointsPlus foods, such as proteins, nuts and seeds, popcorn, high carb foods. Obviously, when eating out, you will have to guesstimate portions, and you will be fairly accurate, but when at home, definitely continue weighing and measuring.

In closing, if not measuring and weighing 0 PointsPlus foods does not work for you, then go back to weighing and measuring them.

I just love the flexibility of the Weight Watchers program (which is why I recommend it), but if you are going with another program or going it alone, you may be able to incorporate some of my suggestions.

Simple, huh?

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