Even though you may recognize your slow weight gain, the problem might not be one you want to face or think about. However, this issue could be easier to fix than you think — if you are willing to take a serious look at the "junk in your trunk" (i.e., your current junk food intake).
Junk foods (or, as I prefer to call them, "fun foods") are things your body doesn't need but you eat just for pleasure. They are usually eaten in addition to your normal food intake and add additional calories to your day.
If you find yourself in the habit of eating one of these on a regular basis, you may have identified your problem.
The Candy Bar
One average candy bar per day = 250 calories
Times 7 days a week = 1,750 calories/week
Times 31 days in a month = 7,750 calories/month
Times 365 days in a year =91,250 calories/year
Eating a candy bar every day for a year could contribute to an annual weight gain of 26 pounds.
One oatmeal raisin cookie = 200 calories
Times 7 days a week = 1,400 calories/week
Times 31 days in a month = 6,200 calories/month
Times 365 days in a year = 73,000 calories/year
Eating a cookie a day for a year could contribute to annual weight gain of 20.8 pounds.
The Medium Order of Fries
One order of McDonald’s French Fries, medium size (3.9 oz.) = 340 calories
Times 7 days a week = 2,380 calories
Times 31 days in a month = 10,540 calories
Times 365 days in a year = 123,100 calories
Eating a medium order of fries a day for a year could contribute to an annual weight gain of 35.5 pounds.
The Can of Pop
One 12 oz. can of pop per day = 150 calories
Times 7 days a week = 1050 calories
Times 31 days in a month = 4,650 calories
Times 365 days in a year =54,750 calories
Drinking a 12 oz. can of pop a day for a year could contribute to a weight gain of 15.6 pounds a year.
Think tea is better?
One 16 oz. glass of sweet tea per day has the same amount of calories as the can of pop.
The Take Home Message
If you want to shed a few pounds or prevent weight gain, limit the unnecessary calories. Exercise is important to help burn calories and for the health benefits, but often the amount of calories expended is overestimated. For instance, a 150-pound person walking 2 mph on a treadmill for 30 minutes only burns 83 calories. That is less than half an oatmeal cookie. You may just want to opt for water the next time you grab for that can of pop.