When you're raising children or trying to lose weight after a pregnancy, you may not have a lot of time for fancy workouts. Sometimes, small adjustments in your diet and routine are enough to make a difference when you're trying to get back in shape. A simple change like decreasing the amount of bread you eat can help you reach your weight loss goals.
Weight loss happens when your body burns more calories in a day than you consume. Exactly how much weight you'll lose by reducing bread really depends on how much bread you're currently eating and whether or not you exercise. You need to eliminate approximately 500 calories from your daily diet to lose about a pound per week. Two slices of white bread add up to about 140 calories, while a plain hamburger bun has about 120 calories. One piece of cornbread has 190 calories and one large (6-inch) white pita has about 165 calories. For example, if you're eating five to six slices of white bread a day, then eliminating bread entirely will help you lose about a pound a week. You probably shouldn't eliminate bread entirely, though, because grains are part of a healthy diet.
Bread provides needed fiber, folic acid and iron, but it's easy to overdo this tasty food item. Many people grab bread instead of vegetables when they're stressed. If you're trying to eat 2,000 calories a day, for example, then you should have no more than 6 ounces of grains a day. If you eat just one bagel, that can have up to 5 ounces of grains and take up almost your entire allotment for the day. Watch your portion size and keep it small.
You may not want to eliminate bread entirely, but changing the type of grains you eat can help your weight loss goals. High-fiber bread, like 100 percent whole-wheat bread, takes longer for your body to digest. Eating a sandwich with brown instead of white bread will keep you full longer and likely result in eating fewer calories during the day. Lightly processed whole-grain foods have a low glycemic index, which means they're absorbed more slowly into your bloodstream and keep you feeling full longer. Other than whole-grain bread, examples of these foods include oatmeal, quinoa, wild and brown rice and spelt.
If you have a wheat intolerance, cutting wheat completely out of your diet can cause a dramatic loss in weight. People with wheat intolerance have an antibody reaction that causes them to bloat and experience inflammation. Bloating can cause weight gain by itself, and inflammation can make it tougher to lose weight. In a University of Miami study, a group of people eliminated wheat and other atibody-producing foods from their diets and lost about 1 to 2 pounds per week, according to an article in "The Independent" published in January 2013.