Mistakes we make at breakfast, lunch and dinner that make us gain weight without knowing it

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We spoke with three nutritionists to detect negative habits and design the ideal daily menu

Deep down,  we know when we are eating wrong . Overdoing it with salt, sugar, low fats, ultra-processed foods or carbonated drinks are habits that we avoid when we want to take care of ourselves and without the need for any expert to tell us. The problem comes when we choose objectively healthy foods but we do not know how to control the quantities or the time of day in which we include them in the diet, we skip meals with the intention of losing weight and we put our hands on our heads when just the opposite happens or We rely too much on light ingredients  or ingredients without added sugars that do not help us achieve our goals. To avoid these and other  mistakes that we unconsciously make , we have spoken with three nutritionists to discover what the perfect breakfasts, lunches and dinners would be like , in addition to remembering everything we do wrong so as not to repeat it.

Breakfast, the most important meal of the day?

It's what they say, although it is not specified what is the best time to enjoy it. There are those who cannot leave home without trying a bite; Just the opposite happens to those who are diehards of intermittent fasting, who sometimes wait until eleven or twelve in the morning to eat. To find out what are the most common mistakes we make at breakfast, we have spoken with Dr. Yaiza Acosta, sports doctor and nutritionist, who first explains to us that "

It is true that coffee satisfies us and gives us energy, but it makes us hungry much later and we spend more time fasting and, "If we do not practice intermittent fasting, which is a very valid activity for weight loss, eating breakfast in the afternoon alters our daily rhythm and other activities." Starting the day with cookies or industrial pastries would not be advisable either. "And, last but not least,  forgetting to hydrate with water as soon as we get up" is another mistake in the book.

The ideal combination

Starting from the basis that the perfect breakfast does not exist, the correct approach involves personalization, "because it is based on our lifestyle and the type of diet we have. Therefore, each person has and must adapt it to their type of nutritional regimen. The most important thing is that it always includes fruits, vegetables, complex carbohydrates, a high-quality protein and healthy fat." In practice, "the ideal is to combine the complex hydrate (whole wheat toast, sweet potato, among others), with a protein source such as serrano ham, cheese, egg or tuna, and for vegans, tofu, tempeh and healthy fats such as evoo, clarified butter or nuts.

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Breakfast and intermittent fasting

Regarding the best time to have breakfast, "the important thing is to have at least 30 minutes to do it calmly. I recommend getting up, hydrating with water and not coffee, and then having coffee or having a full breakfast (for half an hour) "If not, we can drink coffee, tea or collagen supplement and postpone 1 hour to make breakfast quietly." Although, "if you train in the morning, I do recommend a light breakfast before going to the gym. With a little complex carbohydrate, a contribution of fiber and some essential amino acids. In this way you replenish glycogen stores, preparing the muscle to perform strength exercise. 

In addition

we talked about a very popular method for a couple of years as it is the one followed by Gisele B√ľndchen or Elsa Pataky: "Currently it is fashionable to do intermittent fasting , which is a technique not suitable for everyone . The important thing is quality and the foods that we are going to use to break this fasting phase; we do not recommend that they be ultra-processed, but rather natural and that they incorporate all the macronutrients (hydrates, proteins, vegetables/fruits and fats)". In conclusion and in her expert opinion, "there is no problem for healthy patients to skip breakfast, but I always advise studying each case individually and at all times being advised by a professional."


Don't lose good habits at lunch

For many it is the most complicated meal of the day because skipping it is very easy when the day gets complicated. Although Griselda Herrero, nutritionist, dietician and HelloFresh collaborator in her  back-to-school recipe kits, points out the main mistakes we make at lunch, but not before making a clarification: "Attributing the responsibility for changes in Weight is an error that we have been carrying for a long time and which is important to get rid of so as not to fall into restrictive dietary patterns, frustration or unnecessary guilt . On the other hand, we can encourage good eating habits, not with a 'weight-centric' approach, but rather with the objective of promoting good physical and mental health.

That said, it does detect that "the main mistakes we make are usually related to avoiding foods that we consider 'unhealthy'  and eating a poorly nutritious diet; not including all the food groups necessary for the body; having very changing schedules or eating very late and quickly; not planning and eating anything (the first thing we grab); or arriving at the meal very hungry and without foresight, which causes us to eat more and tend to make more palatable and dense food choices. nutritionally".

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One last warning

The HelloFresh collaborator concludes with a warning: "Skipping meals is not a good nutritional strategy, since it affects many metabolic patterns, such as hunger and satiety signals, or metabolic efficiency. Therefore, if we anticipate that we are going to eat more late, it is important to have some intermediate intake before reaching lunch. We can use fruit, some nuts or some yogurt (animal or vegetable), to give a few examples.

He also warns about the habit of skipping lunch and reinforcing the snack : "The most likely thing is that we stop including some of the food groups that would be in our lunch, since we displace their consumption by that of other foods that suit us." ' more in the snack, reducing the nutritional value and failing to provide the nutrients that our body needs. 

Dine like a beggar

From sleeping better to maintaining an ideal weight, eating your last meal well is essential and nutritionist Biri Murias, director of Biri Murias Advanced Beauty Site, is clear about the worst habits in this regard. This, together with eating an amount that is not considered appropriate and eating foods that are better to eat at noon because at night we are not going to have enough caloric expenditure, it makes us gain weight without us realizing it. 

Dinner recipes

Like his colleagues, Murias also considers each case individually: "We cannot make a generalized diagnosis. We must see each person to help them in the best possible way. It is very important that they do not have health problems and differentiate between caring "Our weight and lose weight. If we want to lose weight, the perfect dinner is composed of a portion of animal protein (white meat, wild fish or eggs) with a portion of cooked vegetables, this option is much better than raw vegetables." In addition, he recommends doing it early, so you sleep better. 


Can we skip dinner?

The nutritionist brings up a trend that we have already talked about in the breakfast section: "I am very much in favor of intermittent fasting, always in certain cases and supervised at all times by a specialist. The type of fasting that I like the most is not to have dinner , because when there is excess abdominal fat it helps reduce it. This, together with specific body treatments for the abdomen, gives very good and fast results."

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