Losing Weight Requires Focus – Here’s What You Should Be Eating

Most of us become experts when it comes to losing weight. But, did you know that losing weight requires focus? The fact is that losing weight and keeping it off for the long term requires focus and eating the right foods. Weight Watcher’s is a program that can help you with that. Click here for a special discount and free gift card for new Ebates members. Losing Weight Requires Focus

According to research (based on over 16 years of follow-up) carried out at Tufts University’s Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Policy, diets with a high GL (glycemic load) from eating sugars, starches, and refined grains are associated with excess weight gain. Other studies have also linked GL of the diet to a rise in blood glucose, chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and more. While most of us already are aware of the study’s findings, we usually don’t make smart choices.  That doesn’t need to be the case if you focus on what you should be eating.

Best Foods for Long Term Weight Loss

Increasing your intake of foods like lean meat, skinless chicken, seafood, yogurt, and nuts are strongly correlated to weight loss.  Mixing in additional Superfoods will help prevent chronic disease, build bones, improve eyesight, keep your mind sharp and help support long-term weight loss. Also, making consistent, small, changes to the varieties of protein and carbohydrate-rich foods you eat can have a significant influence on long-term weight loss.

Great examples of healthy protein, vegetables and fat include the following.

  • Seafood and fish including trout, shrimp and salmon.
  • Eggs with the best choices including organic eggs and Omega-3 enriched eggs.
  • Broccoli, kale, spinach, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cucumber, Swiss chard and celery are great super food choices.
  • Healthy fat choices include olive oil, avocado oil and coconut oil. It’s important to include healthy fats for long-term weight loss. Trying to lose weight by focusing on low fat and low-carbs is a recipe for disaster because you end up feeling miserable and give up.

All of your meals should include a healthy protein and fat source, along with low-carb vegetables. Putting together your meals this way will bring your carbohydrate intake into the highly recommended 20-50 grams a day range.

The Importance of Eating Protein

When it comes to sustainable weight loss, protein is KING. Consuming a healthy amount of protein boosts metabolism, reducing the desire for snacking, especially late night snacking by as much as 60%. Weight loss plans high in protein also help reduce compulsive thoughts about food because you’re not hungry for the next carb.

Most people try to lose weight by focusing on their ultimate goal – shedding pounds. Unfortunately, this usually doesn’t work without consuming the right foods, in common sense amounts. Bottom line, putting together a meal that includes a healthy protein source, a fat source, and a low-carb vegetable, along with exercise, will lead to healthy sustainable weight loss. If you do, the recommendations listed here will help you look and feel great for the long term.

Weight Watchers Smartpoints List for Valentine’s Day Candy

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, you may be wondering what special treat would be perfect to spend your smartpoints allowance on. Smartpoints List for Valentine's Day CandyThis Weight Watchers Smartpoints list for Valentine’s Day candy might be just the thing you need to help budget your Smartpoints for the 14th!

Weight Watchers Smartpoints List for Valentine’s Day Candy

Candy Number of Pieces SmartPoints
SweeTarts Mini Gift Exchange Kit, SweeTart Hearts 1 pouch 2
Russell Stover Fine assorted chocolates 2 3
Sweetarts Candy, Hearts 14 3
Sweetarts Cherry lollipops 1 3
See’s Candies Little pops assorted hard candy treats 4 3
Reeses Peanut Butter Hearts, Friendship Exchange Packs, Valentine’s Day 1 4
Trader Joe’s Dark chocolate mini heart cookies 5 4
Russell Stover Marshmallow Heart, Dark Chocolate 1 5
Sweethearts Candies Candy hearts 1 box 6
Weight Watchers by Whitman’s Mint patties 3 6
Wonka SweeTarts Tangy Candy Gummies 14 6
Weight Watchers by Whitman’s English toffee square 3 6
Russell Stover Sugar Free Mint Patties,Chocolate 3 7
Sweetarts Cherry punch candy ropes 3 7
Sweetarts Jellybeans tangy candy 31 7
Whitmans Sampler Assorted sugar free candies 3 7
Wonka SweeTarts Hearts gummies 9 7
Nestle Turtles, Milk Chocolate, Valentine’s Day 2 7
M&M’s Chocolate Candies, Milk Chocolate, Filled Hearts 2 7
Reeses Milk Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Hearts 1 8
Russell Stover Fine Chocolates, All Dark 2 8
Sees Chocolates, Assorted 2 8
Whitman’s Premium assorted chocolates 2 8
Whitmans Sampler Assorted chocolates 3 8
York Peppermint Pattie Hearts, Dark Chocolate Covered 3 8
Elmer Candy Assorted Chocolates, Valentine’s Day 2 9
Necco Sweethearts Large Conversation Hearts 16 9
Snickers Chocolate heart 1 9
Sweethearts Sweethearts candies 40 9
Dove Truffle Hearts, Milk & Dark Chocolate, Valentine’s Day 3 10
Fannie May Solid Milk Chocolate, Hearts 5 10
Reeses Peanut Butter Cups Miniatures, Valentine’s Day 5 10
Russell Stover Caramel, in Fine Milk Chocolate 3 10
See’s Candies Mint krispys 5 10
Butterfinger Chocolates, Heart Shaped 5 10
Dove Dark Chocolate, Hearts 6 11
Dove Promises Milk Chocolate, Hearts 6 11
Ghirardelli Chocolate Solid Chocolate Squares Assortment, Valentine’s Day 4 11
Hersheys Milk Chocolate, Extra Creamy, Hearts 5 11
Pot of Gold Premium Assortment, Valentine’s Day 4 11
CVS Gold Emblem Flavored Hearts, Milk Chocolate 4 12
Russell Stover Chocolates, Assorted, Heart, Happy Valentine’s Day Rose 3 13

I was excited to discover that the Sweethearts candy box is only 6 smart points. The smaller ones are even less, although I’d have to count how many come in these little bags to say for certain.  I think that’s what I’ll be spending my smartpoints allowance on this year. What candy from the Weight Watchers Smartpoints List for Valentine’s Day Candy will make it to your house this year? Will you be brave enough to refrain all together? I’d love to hear in the comments below!

5 Pasta Alternatives to Help Weight Watchers Lose Weight

There are may pasta alternatives out there. Some are even zero smart points!pasta alternatives

Why are most of us such big fans of pasta? Because it’s a delicious, comfort food, that’s hard to resist. The problem is that traditional pasta can cause weight gain. Pasta is also loaded with carbs that have a negative effect on blood-sugar levels and can cause your overall health to suffer. That said, the following five pasta alternatives are good for you, can help weight watchers lose weight, and they’re tasty too!

1. Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti squash is a low fat (0.5 grams of fat per cup) winter squash that can be transformed into pasta-like strings. Think thin-sized spaghetti here.

Spaghetti squash contains about 92% water weight, which accounts for its amazing lack of calories. Just scrape out the spaghetti like strings and top with your favorite pasta sauce. Spaghetti squash boasts a wide variety of vitamins as well. Just 1-cup of spaghetti squash contains 5.4 mg of vitamin C, just about 10% of the recommended daily intake.

Just half it, take the seeds out,  add some water to a bowl, and cook it in the microwave until its soft. Then take a fork to the squash and scrape away. You’ll have spaghetti squash noodles in no time!

2. Zucchini Noodles

Because of the high water content in zucchini, it’s low in carbs, calories and sugars. Zucchini is also high in essential nutrients like manganese, potassium and antioxidants like vitamin A and C. Julienned, shredded sliced into ribbons using a spiralizer or peeler, this low-calorie pasta alternative delivers a great veggie boost when topped off with your favorite pasta sauce.

Zucchini noodles are often referred to as Zoodles. My favorite thing to do with them is spiral them into fettucini noodles and add a little low-calorie white sauce and chicken to the meal. What a wonderful, quick and easy chicken fettucini dish. My kids like it too! This is the one that I have:

3. Shirataki Noodles

These noodles are basically made of fiber and contain zero calories or fat. Shirataki noodles don’t have any real taste, however, similar to tofu; they absorb flavors. Shirataki noodles can be served right out of the package. However, the packaging recommends draining, rinsing then boiling them. Shirataki Noodles are typically found near the section of the store where tofu is displayed. Due to their popularity, these noodles can now be found in retail grocery stores.

I personally can’t stand these noodles. Probably because when I first tried them, they smelled like fish. I’m sure they’re better now, but I’d rather have a zoodle.

4. Whole Grain Pasta Alternatives

When it comes to healthy pasta, Barilla tops the list, carrying several pasta varieties, including ProteinPLUS and other versions containing white fiber, whole-grains, veggie and gluten-free. Barilla’s ProteinPLUS line incorporates egg whites, legumes, barley, flaxseed (adds Omega 3s) and spelt (a hulled wheat) to increase the protein content. A 2-ounce serving has 190 calories, 10 grams of protein, 4 grams of fiber and tastes great. Another healthy pasta alternative is brown rice pasta which is also a great source of magnesium and protein. Brown rice pasta is also a good option for those who need a gluten free pasta option.

5. Soba Noodles

This Japanese noodle alternative is packed with protein and fiber and has a nice, slightly nutty taste. The buckwheat flour used to make these noodles come with a number of health benefits and is also a gluten-free grain. Buckwheat flour is also heart healthy, helps prevent heart disease and is rich in phytonutrients, antioxidants that can prevent a variety of diseases.

These pasta alternatives will help satisfy a pasta fix without packing on the pounds. They’ll also leave you energized and feeling light instead of bloated and tired. They’re the perfect pasta alternatives for weight watchers who love pasta.

In all, my favorite pasta alternative is zoodles and spaghetti squash. Mix them with a bit of marinara sauce and some meatballs and you’re good to go! Which of the above alternatives is your favorite?