Are you confused by what you read or hear about weight loss? Do you have questions about food labels, new fat-free products, diet drugs? Do you have questions about your own personal weight loss problems? You're in luck! You've come to the right place. Ask away.

Although most of the answers to your questions can be found in the Choose to Lose and Eater's Choice books and the Choose to Lose Weight Loss/Healthy Eating Program, feel free to e-mail us your questions. On this page, we will answer some of the questions we have received.

Q: I've read that fat in foods is what makes people fat, so I've tried to cut down on my fat intake, but it doesn't seem to make any difference. I'm still overweight. Ellen F., Bethesda, MD

A: Knowing that fat makes fat is a start, but you have to know more than that. First, you have to know how much fat you personally can eat and still lose weight. This is called your Fat Budget (see chapter 2, Choose to Lose to determine your own Fat Budget). It is like your salary. If you didn't know your real salary, would you know if you could afford a Jaguar? You know you can or cannot afford a $250 winter coat because you know what you earn. This is also true with food.
The second thing you must know so you can control the amount of fat you eat is the amount of fat in individual foods. Say you are about to eat a deli bag of Fritos. You know Fritos are not diet food, but how fattening are they? You look on the label and find the bag contains 270 fat calories. If your Fat Budget is 300 fat calories a day, 270 fat calories represents a big chunk out of your Fat Budget and for not much food. You will probably decide they don't taste that good and pass them up.
You may have thought you were reducing the fat in your diet, but how would you know if you didn't have a Fat Budget and didn't know how much fat food contains? Did you think that dish of Chicken with Cashews that you ate at a Chinese Restaurant was a good low-fat choice? Look it up in the Choose to Lose Food Tables if you want a real shock: 1075 fat calories. How does that fit into your Fat Budget, or rather how many times does your Fat Budget fit into it? On the other hand, prepare Indonesian Chicken with Green Beans (p. 229, Choose to Lose and you'll only be spending 14 fat calories for a serving!

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