Biscuits are a guilty pleasure for many of us. When it comes to weight loss, we tend to overlook the impact of these tiny treats on our diet. While it is true that most packaged biscuits are high in sugar and calories, some biscuits can help you lose weight. It all boils down to the ingredients.
Packaged biscuits go through processing, have a ton of preservatives and sugar. So, I always opt for sugar-free crackers. If I am looking for an evening snack without much hassle, these rackers can be served with hummus which is a great protein and fiber source. It can keep you full for a long time.
— Mehak Shah, Nutritionist
If you’re on a weight loss journey, you closely monitor what you eat. But when it comes to biscuits, we often indulge without a second thought. Unfortunately, most packaged biscuits in the market contain high calories, sugar, and fat. As a result, they can hinder your weight loss goals. That’s why knowing which biscuits are healthy and which can derail your weight loss efforts is essential. You can enjoy your favourite treat guilt-free by reading labels carefully and choosing biscuits made with specific healthy ingredients.
As more and more people are becoming health-conscious and looking for ways to manage their weight, there is a growing interest in finding biscuits that could aid in weight loss. So, if you’re a biscuit lover looking to shed those extra pounds, this article is for you. We’ll delve into the ingredients to look for and those to avoid, so you can make an informed decision when it comes to choosing the best biscuit for your weight loss goals. Let’s get started!
An Introduction to Biscuits
A biscuit is a popular quick bread-like snack commonly referred to as a bakery product. The word “biscuit” is derived from the Latin words “Bis” and “Coctus,” which means “twice-baked.” Like many beautiful things, biscuits took birth in ancient Roman kitchens. The Romans baked them twice to make them last longer. As a result, the first version of biscuits was hard, dry, and not very flavourful. The whole idea behind this invention was to make this food item last during long journeys.
Many centuries later, British bakers experimented with sugar and spices, making biscuits tastier. As a result, today, biscuits cater to all taste palates. With such wide varieties, there is a biscuit for every taste and occasion!
Are Biscuits Really Healthy?
While all biscuits share some basic ingredients and production processes, the ratios of the ingredients vary depending on the taste. Some are sweet and savoury; others may be soft and chewy. Biscuits rarely are considered healthy because many versions are high in calories, sugar, and processed carbohydrates.
Biscuits and Weight Loss
Biscuits are often high in calories, sugar, and fat, so consuming too many biscuits regularly can lead to weight gain and other health problems. Therefore, as a general guideline, it is recommended to limit the intake of biscuits and other similar snacks and instead focus on a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.
To lose weight, one must follow a regulated lifestyle. Based on the size and nutritional composition of the biscuit, generally, one or two biscuits are permissible unless one is very overweight. However, it is always better to consult a nutritionist to determine the appropriate serving size based on your weight and calorie requirements.
Biscuits are not considered healthy because they are often high in calories, sugar, and processed carbohydrates, which can lead to weight gain and health problems. Limiting the intake and focusing on a balanced diet are recommended to lose weight. Depending on the size and nutritional composition, one or two biscuits may be permissible, but it’s best to consult a nutritionist.
Ingredients of Biscuits
It is critical to read the labels on your foods, and biscuits are no different. While biscuits can be a wonderful treat, by being aware of the ingredients in your biscuits, you can make more informed food choices and promote your overall health and well-being.
The following are some of the ingredients included in biscuits:
Many biscuits use refined flour as the main ingredient, which has been processed and stripped of most nutrients. For example, refined flour contains no bran or germ. Therefore, this indicates it is high in calories and carbs but poor in fibre, protein, and other essential nutrients.
Refined flour is less filling than whole wheat flour and other healthy carbs. In addition, because it has less fibre, the body absorbs processed grains and simple sugars more quickly, causing blood sugar levels to rise.
According to a study, elevated blood sugar causes insulin release. Therefore, it makes you feel hungry within a few hours of eating. Refined flour is commonly used in biscuits since it makes them lighter and fluffier, but better weight-loss choices exist. The reality is that eating most biscuits causes you to acquire excess calories.
Sugar is integral to most biscuits, adding sweetness, flavour, and calories. The amount of sugar in biscuits varies depending on the recipe and manufacturer. However, most commercially produced biscuits include a lot of sugar.
Sugar contains high calories but little nutritional value, so it is an empty energy source that can lead to weight gain. Sugar consumption also leads to the development of disorders like Type 2 diabetes and obesity by increasing insulin levels in the blood, as per research. A high insulin level in the blood promotes fat accumulation.
Biscuits contain trans fats due to their manufacturing technique. These synthetic trans fats get created during hydrogenation, which converts liquid oil into solid fat. During the hydrogenation process, vegetable oil is heated to extremely high temperatures. At the same time, hydrogen is ‘bubbled’ through it, generating new chemical bonds with a structure similar to plastic.
As a result, hydrogenated vegetable oil or hydrogenated fat gets produced. This process ensures that biscuits, cakes, pastries, margarine, and processed food items have a long shelf life and do not melt too quickly.
According to a study, these fats are harmful since they raise cholesterol and cause other health concerns. In addition, butter, another typical ingredient in many biscuits, is high in saturated fat and can lead to high cholesterol and weight gain.
Artificial additives such as preservatives, colours, flavours, and sweeteners improve the taste and texture of biscuits. But unfortunately, all of these can be potentially hazardous.
The following are some common preservatives found in biscuits:
Calcium propionate Sodium benzoatePotassium sorbateBHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene)
While regulatory organisations generally consider these preservatives safe, certain persons may have sensitivities or allergies to specific preservatives. However, as per some studies, BHA and BHT are associated with various health problems, including cancer and hormonal imbalances.
Artificial colours improve the appearance of biscuits and make them more aesthetically appealing to consumers. While regulatory bodies typically consider these artificial colours harmless, certain studies have connected the long-term use of specific artificial colours to hyperactivity in children with ADHD or behavioural difficulties.
It is crucial to remember that while artificial colours can improve the appearance of biscuits, they have no nutritional benefit and do not improve the biscuit’s taste or texture.
Instead of sugar, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) gets added to biscuits. Compared to table sugar, HFCS is an artificial sweetener with insignificant differences. The truth is that HFCS is not a nutritious substance. It causes weight gain and contributes to other health issues such as obesity and diabetes. It is critical to understand that sugar, in any form, damages one’s health.
The ingredients commonly found in biscuits include refined flour, sugar, fat, and artificial additives such as preservatives, colours, flavours, and sweeteners. These ingredients can adversely affect health, such as contributing to weight gain, increasing blood sugar levels, and raising cholesterol. Therefore, it is essential to read labels and make informed food choices to promote overall health and well-being.
Alternative Biscuits Ingredients to Consider for Weight Loss
While biscuits are not weight loss foods, one can have a few varieties in moderation in a healthy and balanced diet. When choosing the best biscuit for weight loss, please consider calorie value, sugar content, fibre content, and serving size.
Here are some suggestions:
Almond Flour or Coconut Flour
These flours are lower in carbohydrates and higher in protein and fibre than conventional wheat flour, making them a suitable choice for individuals trying to cut back on carbohydrates.
Almond flour biscuits are satisfying and tasty and make an excellent low-carb and gluten-free alternative to typical biscuits. However, remember to watch your overall calorie intake and practise portion control since even healthier options can contribute to weight gain if consumed excessively.
Oats are high in fibre and can be used to produce healthy biscuits. Look for recipes that use rolled oats or oat flour in the ingredient list. These oat biscuits are a tasty and nutritious alternative to regular biscuits. They are lower in sugar and higher in fibre than most biscuits, making them an excellent weight-loss option.
Wholewheat biscuits may be a better alternative for weight loss than regular biscuits because they include more fibre and nutrients. Wholemeal flour contains fibre, which helps you feel fuller for longer, preventing overeating and aiding in weight loss.
Wholemeal biscuits are frequently lower in sugar and fat than conventional biscuits, making them a better choice. However, even wholemeal biscuits can be rich in calories, so portion control is still essential. To reduce weight, you must enjoy whole-wheat biscuits as an occasional treat.
Since ragi (also known as finger millet) is a whole grain high in fibre and nutrients, ragi biscuits can be suitable for weight loss. In addition, Ragi is high in complex carbs, which can keep you fuller for longer and provide you with energy throughout the day.
Ragi biscuits are also lower in sugar and fat than standard biscuits, making them a healthy alternative.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are beneficial for overall health. They are rich in protein, healthy fats, and fibre. So they can help you feel full and satisfied. In addition, biscuits containing them are crunchy and flavourful. Walnuts, almonds, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds are nuts and seeds that are an excellent addition to biscuits.
Instead of sugar, natural sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup, and fruit puree sweeten biscuits. These sweeteners are less harmful than sugar and can give natural sweetness to baked goods.
Instead of butter, healthy fats such as the rich sources of healthy unsaturated fatty acids like MUFA and PUFA in biscuits make them safer. These fats can benefit heart health and also keep you satiated.
There are alternative biscuit options with ingredients that one can occasionally incorporate into a healthy and balanced diet for weight loss. Some options include almond flour or coconut flour, oats, whole wheat, ragi, nuts and seeds, natural sweeteners, and healthy fats.
How to Choose Biscuits for Weight Loss?
If you want to include biscuits in your weight loss diet, here are some pointers on how to do so:
Check the Ingredients
Look for biscuits with a short ingredient list created with natural, healthful ingredients such as whole grains, nuts, and seeds. One must avoid sugary, artificially flavoured, and preservative-laden biscuits.
Check the Calorie Count
Choose low-calorie biscuits and avoid high-calorie ones, such as those coated in chocolate or cream-filled.
Check the Serving Size
Controlling your portion sizes can be an effective weight loss method since it allows you to manage your calorie intake and make healthier meal choices.
Paying attention to the serving size on the nutrition label can aid in portion control and making informed decisions about what and how much to consume. For example, suppose a biscuit’s serving size is two pieces, but you eat four. In that case, you get double the amount of calories, sugar, and fat mentioned on the label.
High Fibre Content
Fibre-rich biscuits can be a good choice for those trying to maintain a healthy diet or lose weight. Also, this is because fibre is an essential nutrient crucial for certain bodily functions, including easing digestion, boosting satiety, and aiding in blood sugar regulation.
Fibre-rich biscuits can help you feel full and satisfied for extended periods, reducing the urge to snack on less healthy items between meals. Choose whole grain biscuits or those with additional fibre, such as bran or psyllium husk.
Low-fat biscuits are a suitable alternative for persons trying to maintain a healthy diet or lose weight because they contain fewer calories than full-fat. When shopping for low-fat biscuits, seek those produced with nutritious grains like whole wheat or oats.
These biscuits are typically higher in fibre and nutrients than refined grain biscuits. However, it may be less satisfying and filling than its full-fat counterparts, leading to overeating or eating less nutritious items later in the day.
To counteract this, couple your low-fat biscuits with protein-rich items like almonds, seeds, or a piece of cheese, which can help create feelings of fullness and contentment.
Low Sodium Content
Biscuits with low sodium content can be advantageous for people aiming to limit their overall sodium intake. Look for biscuits labelled “low sodium” or “reduced sodium” that use whole grains or natural ingredients.
To stay within recommended sodium intake levels, please pay attention to serving size and restrict the number of biscuits consumed daily.
Considering these considerations, biscuits can be permissible in a healthy, balanced diet while working towards your weight loss objectives. It should be considered that the daily recommended value of sodium for adults is lower than 2.4 g a day.
Check the ingredients and choose biscuits made from natural, healthy ingredients like whole grains, nuts, and seeds, and avoid sugary or artificially flavoured biscuits. Also, choose biscuits with a low-calorie count, pay attention to the serving size, and opt for biscuits that are high in fibre and low in fat and sodium. By following these tips, biscuits can be a part of a healthy and balanced diet when working towards weight loss goals.
Additional Factors to Consider for Weight Loss
There are various aspects to consider when trying to lose weight. Here are a few examples:
Regular physical exercise can help you burn calories, develop muscle, and boost your metabolism, all of which can help you lose weight.
Adequate and sound sleep is crucial to a healthy weight-loss regime because it helps regulate hormones that influence hunger and fullness.
Stress management is vital for healthy weight loss. That is hormonal changes due to chronic stress can lead to overeating and weight gain. So, learning stress management techniques such as meditation or yoga might benefit weight loss.
Drinking enough water will help you feel full, lower your calorie intake, and improve your digestion and overall health.
Consistency is the key to making healthy choices essential for weight loss. Also, this includes following a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and getting adequate sleep.
To lose weight, consider exercise to burn calories and boost metabolism, get enough sleep to regulate hunger hormones, manage stress to avoid overeating, drink enough water to feel full and improve digestion, and maintain consistency with a balanced diet, exercise, and sleep.
Did you know that the world’s largest biscuit was created in 2011 in the UK and weighed more than 12,000 pounds? It was over 102 feet long and 27 inches thick, taking almost 12 hours to bake. While this giant biscuit is not recommended for weight loss, it’s interesting to see how biscuits can come in all shapes and sizes!
It is vital to remember that only some biscuits are good for you. Some biscuits contain healthy ingredients such as whole grains, nuts, and seeds. When consumed in moderation, they can be an occasional nutritious snack. However, reading the ingredients list and nutritional value is critical to make informed food choices.
It is important to remember that losing weight is a complex process affected by various factors, including general food habits, physical activity levels, and individual metabolism. Therefore, while some foods may have qualities that can help with weight loss, no single food can guarantee weight loss.
Disclaimer: The purpose of this article is just to disperse knowledge and raise awareness. It does not intend to replace medical advice from professionals. For further information, please contact our certified nutritionists Here.
Frequently Asked Question
Q: Can I eat biscuits while trying to lose weight?
A: It is determined by the type and quantity of biscuits consumed. Some biscuits include a lot of added sugar, harmful fats and high calories, making them unhealthy for weight management if consumed in large quantities. However, in moderation, one can eat healthier options in limited quantities with low sugar, high fibre, and low-calorie content in a weight loss diet.
Q: Are there any biscuits that are low in calories and can help with weight loss?
A: Some biscuits are lower in calories and can be consumed moderately in a weight loss diet. Rice cakes, oatmeal cookies and digestive biscuits are some options to consider. Reading the labels and nutritional information to ensure you select biscuits with fewer calories and sugar is also a good idea.
Q: What are the best biscuits to eat if I’m trying to lose weight?
A: It is vital to remember that moderation is essential regarding biscuits and weight reduction. Some biscuits, such as oats cookies, digestive biscuits, and ragi biscuits, are lower in calories and sugar content. Therefore, one can include them in small quantities in a weight-loss diet.
Q: Are there any biscuits high in protein and low in carbohydrates, making them good for weight loss?
A: Yes, protein-rich, low-carbohydrate biscuits can be a healthy choice for weight loss. These protein biscuits contain protein-rich ingredients such as whey protein, pea protein, or soy protein. In addition, they often have little flour or sugar, making them low in carbohydrates.
Q: Are whole wheat biscuits better for weight loss than regular biscuits?
A: Whole wheat biscuits are often healthier for weight loss than refined flour biscuits. Also, it has more fibre and minerals than refined flour. Fibre is crucial for weight loss because it keeps you satiated for extended periods, which might help you avoid overeating. In addition, whole-grain flour has more vitamins and minerals than refined flour, which can aid overall health and fitness.
Q: Should I choose biscuits that are low in fat or low in sugar if I’m trying to lose weight?
A: When selecting weight loss biscuits, focusing solely on one nutrient, such as fat or sugar, is not always necessary. Instead, analyse the biscuit’s nutritional value, including its calorie content, fibre content, and nutrient density. Please read the label properly to decide between the low-fat and low-sugar biscuits you want.
Q: Can I eat biscuits as a snack between meals while on a weight-loss diet?
A: Biscuits are low in fibre and calories, making them unsuitable as a healthy snack. When it is difficult to give up biscuits, what you can do for yourself and your family is to choose healthier options. Whole grain or multigrain biscuits are the healthier options.
Q: How many biscuits can I eat while trying to lose weight?
A: The amount of biscuits you can eat while trying to lose weight is determined by several factors, including your calorie demands, the type and size of the biscuits, and the other foods in your diet.
When eating biscuits, it’s crucial to remember portion proportions because they can be high in calories, sugar, and fat. Choose smaller pieces of biscuits or split them in half to reduce your calorie intake.
Q: Should I avoid biscuits altogether if I’m trying to lose weight?
A: If you are attempting to reduce weight, you don’t have to forgo biscuits entirely. However, if you still like munching on them occasionally, select biscuits made with whole grains containing less refined flour and sugar.
Q: Can biscuits be a part of a balanced diet for weight loss, and if so, how often should I eat them?
A: Biscuits can be part of a healthy weight-loss diet, but one must ensure that one eats them in moderation. Some biscuits contain fewer calories, sugar, and saturated fat while being rich in fibre and nutrients. It is also vital to think about serving size and frequency of ingestion. Eating biscuits once or twice a week as part of a healthy diet will likely complement weight loss efforts.
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