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Weight Control Secret: Energy Balance

Learn how to balance calories in with calories out
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Calories and Exercise continued...

Exercise is a critical part of weight control and good health, but the truth is that, at least for some people, it can also send your appetite into overdrive. Don't fall into the trap of thinking that exercising gives you license to scarf down cheeseburgers and donuts. The trick is to ease your hunger with satisfying foods that taste good and are low in calories.

It's also a good idea to fuel up before your workout. Go for healthy, balanced snacks that include lean protein, complex carbs, fiber, and/or small amounts of fat (try whole-grain cereal with berries and low-fat milk; half a whole-grain bagel with peanut butter and banana slices; a smoothie made with low-fat yogurt, fresh fruit, and orange juice; or brown rice and steamed veggies sprinkled with a little cheese).

It's also important to stay well hydrated so you won't mistake thirst for hunger. It's easy to overindulge in sports drinks and fruit juices that satisfy thirst but can add lots of extra calories. Try good old-fashioned water to quench your thirst before and after your workouts.

If you don't exercise each day, eat a little more on the days you work out and less on days you are less active. Some people complain they eat more on those less active days simply because of boredom. Instead of reaching for something extra to eat, lace up your sneakers and take a walk!

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