Yes. It’s true. There is one specific food that is preventing you from reaching your bodyweight goals. Are you ready for us to pull the curtain and reveal the menacing culprit? It’s the gateway food

You may be asking yourself, ‘what the heck is a gateway food?’ Well, the gateway food is different for everyone. For some of us, it might be a bag of chips. For others it could be a cookie. And, this might come as a shock, a gateway food can also be a whole, healthy food like almonds or peanut butter. 

A gateway food is any food item that you can’t just have one serving of — no matter how hard you try. Once you start, you can’t stop. It’s the jar of peanuts that you take a handful of and all of the sudden, you’re three servings in. It’s the bag of popcorn you tell yourself you’ll only have a fistful of but end up eating the entire thing. Then, what’s worse, you tell yourself ‘I’ve already slipped up once, might as well call the whole day a blunder.’ 

Gateway foods at their worst are triggers for an entire cheat day. They start off innocent, then turn into an unraveling problem that just won’t stop. 

So, what are some strategies to help you gain power over your gateway foods? Here are a few:

  • First, identify what’s a gateway food for you. Approach that food with the knowledge that you have to keep control.
  • Take one serving, and then put the rest away (example: count out 12 almonds, then put the jar out of sight) 
  • Only buy these foods sparingly. Don’t keep them on your staple grocery list. 
  • Avoid them all together! Remove the temptation for good.

Gateway foods can come in different forms for everyone. It’s important to keep in mind that they can be disguised as ‘healthy food,’ too. Sure, one protein ball is great. But four or five protein balls? You’ve gone too far.