Let's go S.O.S.!! (Salt Free, Oil Free, Sugar Free)
Updated: Feb 25
For those of us who have struggled for years to shift a few pounds it seems like a simple solution is to reduce our food consumption and up our fitness level. However, there is more than one resolve to this tricky mantra. I have tried pretty much every diet there is. My weight has fluctuated from a healthy weight for my 5'2 frame to an additional 70lb extravaganza on my waistline. It took me years to get back down to my ideal weight and when I did, I got so excited I started piling on the pounds again. It's been a vicious cycle of feeling proud of myself to feeling like I've failed. I took my health into my own hands and decided to get a certification in Nutrition.
I have discovered two things about myself through this endeavour: One, I have a food addiction. And two, going salt free, oil free and sugar free changed everything.
Now you might be saying "Gen, I can't give up salt, oil AND sugar! Where will my food get flavour from?" Believe it or not, you absolutely can flavour your food without these hidden weight gain pests. I spent quite a bit of time in the supermarket perusing the aisles to see if there was anything I could use to not feel like I was suffering. Some of these tricks I would recommend only if you have weight to lose, if you are a healthy ideal weight for your body frame you may disregard my tips at any time.
1. Spice up your life! I'm not talking about making food spicy (if this is not your thing), I'm talking about giving your food that savoury deliciousness without the sodium. I have a few go-to's; Garam Masala, salt-free herb seasonings,
2. Vinegar. I'm talking about Balsamic, Rice, Red wine, White wine, Apple pretty much any vinegar on a store shelf is a safe bet.
3. Salt-free tomatoes and other salt-free frozen or canned veggies.
4. Unrefined carbs are your friend, don't ever forget them. Get a bit of a variety so that if you too suffer from food addiction, you won't get bored of eating the same thing at every meal. Stick to brown rices (jasmine, basmati, red rice, etc.) and a variety of potatoes (Yukon gold, sweet potatoes, yams, etc.)
5. Switch out pasta noodles for Konjac, Shirataki or Zucchini noodles. I am absolutely obsessed with zucchini noodles.
6. Up your lean protein. (I follow a 95% plantbased vegan diet, 5% vegetarian . If you are in the same boat, want to follow a vegan diet or are already following the vegan lifestyle but struggling to shift the weight I highly suggest measuring your legumes and pulses as they are quite calorie dense but OH SO good for you!) I have struggled with my weight due to lack of measurement (hello food addict!) so if you feel that you are struggling too, measuring is absolutely key.
7. Invest in a silicone mat, available through Amazon and most major retailers. Thank me later.
8. Invest in some non-stick pans. You don't have to go overboard, one or two should be fine.
9. If you crave a sweetened coffee or tea in the morning, I highly recommend PureVia Stevia (not sponsored or affiliated). There has been quite a bit of backlash over using artificial sweeteners however this one is all natural made from Stevia leaves. (If you are still iffy about using this kind of product, do your due diligence and rough in some elbow grease to research more about it.) You can also use this in baking and works perfectly as a sugar substitute, I have used it in making breads, muffins and cookies with excellent results.
10. Find a fitness/wellness app for your phone that works for you. I have recently discovered Cronometer and now I'm completely obsessed.
11. Get a minimum of 10,000 steps a day and/or hit the gym (home workout) if you are able to.
12. If you can't control what you are eating (dinner with friends/family), you absolutely can control how much. I would never miss an opportunity to get a small treat with my kiddos when we have special one-on-one days. Just make it the best possible option for your little craving.
I hope these tips help you on your weightloss journey! Let me know in the comments if you've ever followed the S.O.S. diet and how it helped you.