How to Stop Eating Bread to Lose Weight

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It can be difficult to stop eating bread in North America where most meals are centered around bread or other grains, making it easy to eat too much of it. An average slice of bread has about 100 calories, so cutting out bread, or reducing it, can help you lose weight. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Pyramid recommends about six servings of grains per day, half of which should be whole grain. To lose weight, you can choose fewer servings, but be sure to choose only whole grains, not refined white grains.

  • Instead of wheat bread, choose different grains. This also means avoiding pasta, which is made from wheat. Brown rice or barley are healthy alternatives to bread that will fill you up. Quinoa is a seed that is good for you because unlike most grains, it is very high in protein. It can be cooked like any grain: soak it for about 15 minutes and rinse thoroughly, then boil it for about 15 minutes or until it's tender. You can use quinoa like rice, in a stir fry, as a side dish or in a salad.

  • Watch the portions sizes of grains. This is especially important when you're trying to lose weight, since most people used to filling up on bread eat portions of grains that are far too large. According to the Food Pyramid, a 1/2 cup portion of a cooked grain is considered one serving. To lose weight, you would reduce that amount. Mix up your options by having oatmeal at breakfast, quinoa at lunch or brown rice at dinner.

  • Fill up on vegetables and fruit each day. Eliminating bread can be difficult because it makes us feel full and is convenient. It's quick to grab some bread and top it with just about anything for a sandwich or snack. Purchase cut-up veggies and keep them in individual bags or containers in your fridge. That way, if you're hungry, it's easy to grab a bag for a snack. Add a low-fat dip or, even better, some hummus for added protein. Eat a vegetable soup or salad at lunch, and make sure half to three-quarters of your plate has vegetables on it at dinner; the rest should include protein and grain.

  • Eat a small portion, a half cup or less, of beans every day. You can add them to chili, eat them with eggs or puree them into a spread or dip. Beans help fill you up and reduce your craving for bread. They also add protein and fiber to your diet. Extra fiber is important because eliminating bread also eliminates a source of fiber.

  • Drink plenty of water. Water keeps you hydrated, but it also helps you feel full. Many people confuse hunger with thirst and eat when what they really need is a glass of water. Water also helps keep you regular when you're making changes to your diet.

References

  • Photo Credit Pearl barley on the big wooden spoon image by Elzbieta Sekowska from Fotolia.com
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