I have a friend who recently asked me for help with her diet. She felt that she was doing everything right but couldn’t lose any weight. I asked her to write down what she ate in a typical day. It all sounded good: Hard-boiled eggs for breakfast, fresh fruit for snacks, big salads for lunch and lots of veggies for dinner.
Then I asked: “And what do you put on your salads and veggies?” She explained that she liked Ranch salad dressing on salads and Thousand Island dressing on veggies. Oh, and she added, she liked to dunk her apple slices in hot fudge sauce for what she called “a virtuous dessert.”
Oops. When we figured out the total calories added to her diet each day in terms of dressings, sauces and dips, they came out to 800 extra calories daily! Mystery solved.
If you’re trying to shed a few pounds, try the following diet-friendly options:
- If you have a favorite brand of salad dressing and don’t want to switch, cut the calorie content by mixing it with apple cider vinegar, such as Vitacost Organic.
- Or, try mixing your favorite salad dressing with the corresponding flavor of zero-calorie Walden Farms, such as Walden Farms Blue Cheese.
- For vegetables, add flavor without adding calories by mixing salsa with plain Greek yogurt. Choose one that’s extra thick and chunky, such as Drew’s.
- About that hot fudge sauce for those slices of apples? You can keep the fudge fun without the fattening consequences by mixing up your own. Use sugar-free cocoa powder and make it with one-fourth the water. Then dip the fruit in the thick, fudge-rich mix. One tablespoon of Shiloh Farms Organic Cocoa Powder has just 12 calories. You can add some sweetness with stevia.
- Another way to dunk that fruit: Walden Farms dips, which come in chocolate, marshmallow and caramel flavors.