What the hell is going wrong?
Well, there’s more to eating for a lean physique than simply filling up on fresh veg and lean proteins, as Australian dietician Paula Norris has shown.
She’s been sharing side-by-side images of the same healthy meals on her Instagram, with vastly different calorie counts.
In one example, she looks at “sneaky ‘salads”, one bowl of which contains 995kcals and the other seemingly identical one weighing in at 535kcals.
The difference, she says, is the dressing.
“Unfortunately calorie heavy dressings, too much grain and not enough veg can result in a ‘salad’ with calories closer to that of a risotto.”
The smaller portion contains half the amount of grains, halloumi, chicken, and double the amount of veg – replacing the oily balsamic dressing with a vinegar and mustard variation.
Another dish that gets the side-by-side treatment is homemade burrito.
One wrap contains over 900kcals, compared to a much fuller-looking 520kcal burrito.
There, Paula points out, the size of the wrap can save you around 100kcals alone.
“But the other differences save you an extra 300kcals,” she says, pointing out that the lower calorie option doesn’t use cooking oil and opts for extra lean mince over regular mince, less avocado and cheese and again, a lot more veg.
Instead of cooking with oil, Paula recommends putting a little water in a non-stick pan for cooking onion and mince.
And in almost all of the dishes she shows, she bulks meat out with fresh vegetables – meaning that she can then reduce the amount of carbs (which although necessary, don’t need to be eating in huge quantities to feel full).
By making sure that you really pack all your dishes out with lots of fresh green veg, “the bulk of these meals is pretty much the same, so both will be equally filling”.
She explains: “This is important because satiety is one of the major challenges when trying to lose weight and many people think they need to eat smaller meals. This is simply not necessary!”
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was republished here with permission.