Use This Clever Diet Trick At The Hotel Buffet To Never Gain Weight Again

Do you know the dietary danger zones that can cause you to gain weight unintentionally?

A recent study found that we underestimate how fattening food off someone else’s plate can be.

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Don’t get sucked into a food illusion and learn when to cut caloriesCredit: Getty

A study for the Journal Of Consumer Psychology found that food felt less fattening when shared because you didn’t feel like you owned it.

So when you help a friend or partner with their fries, you consider it to be 18% less fattening than if you slipped into yours.

But that’s far from the only dietary illusion to watch out for.

Here we reveal more, and nutritionist Rhiannon Lambert tells Katy Docherty and Amy Jones how to avoid them.

During confinement

MANY of us gained weight during the shutdowns as our plans were canceled and food became even more important.

In May 2020, the country’s total calorie consumption was 15% above normal levels, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies.

In the second half of that year, it was still up 10%.

RHIANNON SAYS: “The temptations at home are only limited to what you have at the time – so make sure you have healthy snacks like nuts and fruit on hand.”

Snacking at the office

GRAZER on chips, candy, chocolate and cake while sitting at your desk during the workday quietly adds up.

The damage amounts, on average, to an additional 2,240 calories per week.

RHIANNON SAYS: “Having the occasional indulgence can be very good for you, but try to make sure it’s not all the time.

“Work on a food and mood diary and make sure you eat balanced meals three times a day, with some snacks if needed.”

Cinema Treats

Plan to bring healthier snacks to the cinema in advance

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Plan to bring healthier snacks to the cinema in advanceCredit: Getty

WE all love a snack or three on hand while watching a movie, especially when the action gets tense.

But we end up consuming an average of 13,000 calories a year at the movies, according to a recent survey.

RHIANNON SAYS: “Replace the crisps with lightly salted or plain popcorn. Popcorn is full of fiber and contains much less salt than crisps.

“Dark chocolate is another great option. It contains iron, magnesium and many more minerals than milk chocolate.

To drink alcohol

Try to quit drinking after just one drink

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Try to quit drinking after just one drinkCredit: Getty

AFTER just a few drinks, we are more likely to crave high-fat foods.

So even moderate alcohol consumption before eating increases calorie intake by 11%, according to a 2015 study published in the journal Appetite.

RHIANNON SAYS: “Try to avoid take-out food after drinking – you’ll be tempted by the unhealthiest foods.

“It’s also best to stop drinking after a drink.

“But if you can’t do that, try alternating drinks of alcohol and water – and don’t drink on an empty stomach.”

Dine out

EATING out is always a treat – especially now that we are allowed to do so again.

But doing this for lunch, rather than eating at home, typically adds 158 calories to your daily intake, according to a study by the Economic Research Service.

Dining out can mean an extra 144 calories.

RHIANNON SAYS: “If you’re eating out, consider going for grilled or steamed options – and replace the fries with new potatoes, extra vegetables or salad.

“Also ask for dressings and sauces to be served alongside your plate.”

All-you-can-eat buffets

Buffets make self-control very difficult

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Buffets make self-control very difficultCredit: Getty

WITH a variety of mouth-watering dishes on offer, it’s easy to load up.

We can scoff up to a third more, according to studies, while US research has found you’re more likely to opt for fatty foods when on a buffet.

RHIANNON SAYS: “Try these healthy portions for hands”

  • 1 protein palm, e.g. chicken and fish.
  • 1 handful of carbohydrates, eg. rice, oats, starchy vegetables and fruits.
  • 2 handfuls of non-starchy vegetables, eg. broccoli, spinach, peppers.
  • 1 inch of healthy fats, eg. olive oil, butter, coconut oil and nut butter.

Full moon

THE more spiritual among us believe that a full moon can impact our appetite – and science backs it up.

Indeed, lighter evenings can disrupt sleep and disrupt production of the hormone melatonin, two factors that fuel hunger.

RHIANNON SAYS: “Studies show that sleep deprived people have a bigger appetite and tend to eat more calories.

“But a high-carb meal taken a few hours before bedtime can help you fall asleep faster and improve sleep quality.”

TV dinners

Try to eat at the table and not in front of the TV

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Try to eat at the table and not in front of the TVCredit: Getty – Contributor

WE all love to sit down for a TV dinner party – feast on a big, greasy meal in front of our favorite program.

After a hard day at work, we feel we deserve nothing less – and we will feel much better.

But beware. Research from the University of Liverpool found that eating while distracted can increase the amount eaten by up to 25%.

RHIANNON SAYS: “Consider making mealtimes family time by eating together at the table and in an area free of electronic devices.”

– Rhiannon is the author of the Sunday Times bestseller The Science Of Nutrition.

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