How many times have you heard that? And okay, it's true. A cookie will not kill you, and eating a cookie is not going to be the end of your healthy journey. But, for someone who is paying close attention to calories in and calories out, a cookie could very well be a u-turn on that healthy path.
I love it when friends text me pictures of their healthy habits or, in this case, the potential trip-up that they averted. So when my phone buzzed with a picture of a big cookie - from a national hotel chain that shall remain nameless - and the number 300 followed by about five exclamation points, I knew exactly where she was and what was going through her mind.
That cookie is 300 calories?!?!?
Yep, friends, it is. And while one cookie won't kill you, unless you have 300 calories to waste on something that takes 30 seconds to eat, it will land you in nutritional time-out for a while. Here's a quick look at what else you could have eaten for 300 calories:
- half a cup of filling oatmeal with raisins, a banana, and a cup of coffee with cream
- small can of tuna with 2 tbs of low fat mayo and chopped celery
- veggie burger topped with grilled mushrooms and onions
- 1/2 brown rice with chicken, sliced mushrooms, and chopped onion
- 1 cup whole wheat pasta with 1/4 cup tomato sauce and veggies
- 1 cup lowfat yogurt with chopped walnuts, raisins, and frozen blueberries
- a pear, an orange, and 16 almonds
- AN ENTIRE CANTALOUPE. YES, THE WHOLE THING!
And here are some more examples: What do 300-calorie Meals Really Look Like?
Those cookies, and the urge to eat them, are all about impulse decisions. You know, the kind we make when we haven't planned ahead and prepped our healthy snacks for the day. But luckily, there are some easy things you can do to make sure one little cookie doesn't wreck your day.
1. Practice your "thanks but no thanks," replies. Say them in the car, practice in the mirror, or have a friend coach you. Just have a polite and friendly way to say thanks for the diet sabotage, but I'll pass!
2. Use a mantra. Repeating a meaningful word or phrase in your head is a proven way to refocus your energy towards your bigger goal. The one to not eat 300-calorie cookies.
3. Have a healthy snack at the ready. Always keep fruit, veggies, nuts, and water nearby for those times when everyone else is snacking and you want to chew something, too!
One cookie won't completely ruin things, but who cares? If you don't have a cookie in your plan, don't let someone else toss one in. This is your healthy journey! Take the wheel!
Get out there and get healthy today. Even if someone offers you a cookie.