Maybe you want to lose weight, but you’re turned off by bland fare like cottage cheese and rice cakes. Women who love spicy foods can still eat healthy. Have your chili and eat it too by trying these suggestions for managing your food choices and adopting other beneficial lifestyle habits.
Healthy Eating for Women Who Love Spicy Foods
1. Practice portion control. Your love for fiery dishes can work to your advantage when you’re trying to cut calories. Flavorful foods tend to satisfy you quicker. A few bites of tangy cheese may be all you want. Hot salsa may help you stop snacking after just a handful of chips.
2. Order Asian food. Asian menus are usually full of highly seasoned options. Use chopsticks to slow you down. Order brown rice instead of white, and avoid the deep fried beef.
3. Eat Mexican. Maybe fajitas are your idea of a good time. Other relatively light choices include grilled chicken or fish, as well as black beans. Double check your salad for high calorie additions like tortilla chips.
4. Feast on Italian. Pepperoni pizza packs on pounds, but you can slim down your slice by making it at home with whole wheat crusts and more vegetables. Soups and half portions of hollow pasta will also help you stick to your diet.
5. Cool off. Does your tongue feel like it’s burning? There’s a good reason why many spicy entrees come with ingredients like cilantro, lime, or coconut milk to balance the heat. You can also soothe your mouth quickly with a glass of milk or something with a rough texture like rice.
6. Avoid heartburn. Experts now believe that spicy foods are unlikely to cause ulcers or heartburn, but they can aggravate existing conditions. For relief, eat smaller and more frequent meals, and avoid lying down for at least 3 hours after your last meal.
7. Chew gum. Another easy way to fight heartburn is to chew gum. Plus, it stimulates saliva so it will help protect your teeth from sticky sauces that accompany some spicy food.
8. Benefit from capsaicin. Studies show that many spices are good for your body. Some of the most promising results have been tied to capsaicin, a compound found in hot peppers. It has been associated with reducing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, and even fighting certain cancers.
Healthy Lifestyle Habits to Adopt
1. Thrive on variety. Fans of spicy food often crave novelty and change in many aspects of their lives. Find excitement in travel and hobbies instead of relying on food for your entertainment.
2. Address your feelings. Some scientists speculate that a fondness for morsels that burn your mouth could be tied to the pain-relieving hormones they trigger. Keeping a journal can help you spot whether you’re using food to cope with difficult events in your life.
3. Manage risks. While a sense of adventure enriches your experiences, it’s good to practice moderation. Stay safe while you sample the latest trends in ethnic cuisine or make new friends online.
4. Quit smoking. It’s natural for our taste buds to lose some sensitivity as we age, but you can keep them sharper by giving up tobacco. That way you can savor your food for as long as possible.
5. Work out. Of course, exercise is essential for weight loss whether you love jalapenos or brownies. Aim to work out at least 3 times a week for about an hour each session.
Spice up your life while you manage your weight. You can eat the hot foods you love as long as you practice portion control, satisfy your need for excitement, and engage in regular exercise.