Okay sooo, once upon a time, I was coaching one of my petite clients and she seemed to be following everything I had set for her but her body wasn’t really changing and I was like okayyy there’s either something she’s not telling me OR there’s something she doesn’t know is even happening. And of course, I was right on the money.
Before sending her to go get her hormones and thyroid check I asked her to do this one thing. I asked her to snap a picture of all her meals and send them to me before she ate them.
And so she did. And what I saw was that she added a condiment or a sauce to every meal but she wasn’t logging it in myfitnesspal because she didn’t think it was a big deal.
And you know what? every once in a while, those little things are okay but if you’re adding things at every meal, it’s going to add up.
And when I asked her what brand of bbq sauce and what branch of mayo she was having, I immediately found the answer as to why her body wasn’t changing. She was adding an average of 50 cal to 5 of her meals…. Which put her 250 calories over what I had set for her and what she told me she was eating. Most people would think so what? 250 calories but that’s huge for a petite girl who’s trying to lose weight. We don’t have a large amount of calories to take in as it is so anything over that amount is probably going to hinder our progress.
So once I figured this out and showed her WHY those things were hindering her success and had her remove some and make substitutions for others, guess what happened? Her body started to change.
To bring awareness to what those condiments were doing, what I had her do was scan the label and add each one of those condiments to her food log(MyFitnessPal). Since she had not measured them in the past, I asked her to be honest about how much she thought she was having and so when she saw that her carbs and fats were way over what her macro targets were, she was like OMGGG I didn’t even realize they would add up that much. So If you’ve never taken a look at the nutrition label on some of your favorite condiments, I encourage you to do so now.
And if your goal is to shed body fat AND you are petite (under 5’3″), I encourage you to avoid or seriously minimize these traditional condiments. You may have used these things in the past without measuring or tracking but that all stops now because every thing counts towards your total daily macros.
Now I know you’re thinking “OMG Kier is such a food nazi! How am I supposed to enjoy what I’m eating if I can’t add condiments or sauce!” And I’m not saying you can’t. I’m saying you should make some smarter swaps AND definitely measure and count the extras in your macros.
So let’s talk about those smarter swaps. First off, there are a lot of health brands out there you can find online or in health food stores who claim they are organic and blah blah blah but just because something organic or vegan or keto or what every else, doesn’t mean that the macros are good and doesn’t always mean that the ingredients are good.
Don’t be fooled by good marketing. It used to happen to me all the time but now I know exactly how to determine if something is worth my while or not. It all comes back to that nutrition label.
I usually look at the ingredients label first and if oil or sugar is in the first few ingredients, I pretty much never put it in my cart. I’m looking for a low list of ingredients that I can actually pronounce because that tells me its natural and not full of chemicals.
I usually also stay away from dairy so anything like milk solids or cheese is typically out. Then I look at the macros and I’m looking for those to be as low as possible. If I see something over 8g fat/carbs/sugar it’s usually a no go. But of course that’s all relative to the serving size. Like if there’s 8g sugar in a tsp, no way but it there’s 8g of sugar in 1/2 a cup, okay maybe because I can use 1/4 cup and get half the sugar and be fine. So it really all depends on those 3 things: ingredients, macros and serving size.
Just because it’s low on macros doesn’t mean I can have unlimited amounts.
I’m still going to measure it out AND count it towards my macros. I prefer to measure it in grams rather than measuring spoons because honestly, it’s so easy to make it a heaping tbsp rather than a perfect one and a heaping tbsp will put you over a few grams. WHICH TOTALLY MATTERS because…
Petites have limited room for error.
Since every gram of macro matters for petites, we really have to be vigilant about tracking the things that might not seem like such a big deal to other people.
And honestly, I dunno about you but I much much much rather get my carbs and fats from whole foods that I can actually chew and have an abundance of (like the avocado or fruit you see in the last two photos).
Just remember, the more volume you have, the fuller you’ll feel. Condiments and sauces can be super calorie dense so just be aware!
So in summary, there are 3 things I want you to do when choosing condiments
- Read nutrition labels and decide if the macros/calories are worth including in your total daily requirement.
- When finding better alternatives, look at the ingredients, macros and serving sizes on the nutrition label.
- Measure and log whatever you use.
Happy eating! And as always… have FUN!