Weight Loss
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Gaining Weight Eating Vegetable Soup?!?!?!? HOW???

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Hi, I am a new member, and joined because I started gaining weight.  I fixed homemade vegetable soup (celery, carrots, onion, canned tomatoes, garbonzo beans, chicken bouillion), based on information I found out, that suggested eating a broth based soup before meals would make you eat less and feel more full longer, with relative few calories. 

Now, perhaps I am eating too much in one sitting?

Perhaps I am eating it at the wrong time??  (I have always had issues getting up in the middle of the night and eating, but I thought 'oh, veg. soup, it is perfect low-cal, middle of the night, early morning snack!')  But apparently I am totally wrong.

Does anyone have any thoughts on either/both of these issues?  That is 1.) the gaining weight with the veg. soup and 2.) getting up in the middle of the night to eat??

Any advise/help would be greatly appreciated, and thank you in advance!!

12 Replies (last)

are you counting calories and staying within your range to lose? its still possible to gain while eating veggies.....

chicken bouillon has a TON of sodium!  I've heard that sodium makes your retain water, which would make you gain weight.

Also, I'm not sure how the calories are in the bouillon, but try using store baught low sodium broth.  It tastes really good and it has very very few calories.

I hope I am posting correctly:

Kelly--I'm not keeping a 'log' so to speak of my calories, just keeping track in my head.  I guess that I was unware that you could actually GAIN from eating vegetables!?

Chitown--I didn't think about the sodium = H20 retention!!!  Any ideas on how long it will take to get the water weight (if that is what it really is) to go away?  Perhaps I should just throw the entire pot away if this is going to be the reality of it all??

THANKS TO YOU BOTH, and please reply back!

Of course you can gain from eating vegetables, if you're eating more calories than you're burning off. If I read your post correctly, you're eating the soup along with your normal meals, correct? I'd suggest tracking your calories on this website for a while to get an idea of how much you're eating.

And sodium could be a major culprit with the weight gain. Just make sure you're drinking lots of water and you should flush the sodium out of your system in a few days. I wouldn't throw away the soup but perhaps you should not be eating tons and tons each day.

I definitely agree with what everyone else is saying about tracking your calories. 

What to do with the soup:  i think it would be a waste to throw it away!  maybe dilute it with some low sodium fat free broth, and add some more veggies.  Or just take the veggies out and put them in new broth?  Vegetable soup can be a great! thing to lose weight, it definitely fills you up, provides fiber and nutrients, and is super cheap.  Not to mention much better than going to mcdonalds, haha.  don't give up.  Just be thoughtful of what's going into your body and how much of it.  :)

Thanks you guys/girls ;-) 

It matters what you're eating in addition to the soup. If you overall calories for the day are still high, it is likely you'll gain weight as mentioned earlier.

And my first thought when reading your thread was just as chitowngrl said.... sodium! Try keeping track of all the sodium you're eating in a day and adding it up. It might be extremely high! Maybe try using an alternative to the bouillon?

It is probably keeping your sodium levels through the roof and making you retain a ton of water! If you can tolerate the soup without the added sodium then that would be your best bet. If you can't, I'd replace the soup with a salad with a light dressing. It'll make you much more full without the bloated feeling that all that excess sodium brings.

But I would also log a few days here on CC so that you can make yourself aware of your overall calorie intake. That might be the culprit as well!

yup, could be the sodium - try to aim for 2,400mg or less per day.
also make sure you're drinking lots of water since if you don't drink enough your body will retain water weight

don't forget that if you're exercising you may be building a bit of muscle which yes will increase your weight but that's a good thing because if you build even a little bit of muscle, it means you'll burn fat faster than if you had less.

another is if you're eating low amount of food (which might explain the midnight binging) then your body is just going to store everything as fat.

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Hi there,

Sodium is a huge factor when coming to weight loss. This makes you retain water because your body is dehydrated from the Sodium intake. If you want to continue eating soup try using a very low Sodium broth or just make your own out of the boiled water from the vegetables and add a few spices (No Salt)

On another note, some vegetables are high in starch (sugar) such as carrots and corn. If your using these they can play a factor in the weight gain.

Just always make sure you are consuming at least 8 glasses of water a day and are consuming low calorie food options and you should see quite a significant change.Laughing

Hi Tracey -

First of all, I think it's great that you're taking and active role in losing weight. I think you're on the right track but need to rethink your vehicle - in this case the soup. As several people have mentioned, the sodium in prepackaged broths, even vaieties labeled 'low sodium,' is very high. Not to belabor the point but in addition to adverse effects this will have on your weight, high sodium is bad for your heart and kidneys and can lead to electrolyte imbalances. You can buy no sodium or low sodium (for real) canned broth at Whole Foods and similar natural food stores. Honestly, it doesn't taste very good though so I buy it and salt it myself; let's face it, food tastes better with salt, but this way I can keep track of how much salt goes in to the soup.

Another 'hidden' source of salt may be the vegetables. If you are not able to use fresh veggies, always use frozen vegetables, never use canned. The canning process adds a high amount of sodium to veggies as well as beans. It's time consuming to make your own beans for soup so look for low sodium varieties and be sure to rinse them before throwing them in the pot. Again, a natural food market is more likely to have low sodium beans that really are low in sodium. Or consider buying a pressure cooker, which will drastically reduce the time needed to cook beans.

While broth or bullion alone is a "free" food, once you start adding anything at all, even veggies, you food groups. It doesn't matter what you eat, if you eat more than you use your body will store it as fat. Most veggies are high in fiber, low in calories and full of nutrients so they are often a good food choice but not if they push you up over your calorie count. Find your caloric needs for the day (you can get a precise figure from metabolic testing or use the calculator on this site to get a rough estimate) and start journaling your eating and exercising habits.

When choosing veggies for your soup, keep in mind that garbanzo beans are wonderful but in addition to a protein serving, they also count as a carbohydrate. Also, potatoes, peas and corn count as a carb serving, not a vegetable serving.  I've heard varying opinions on carrots and where they stand so I think the best thing to do is see for yourself if they effect your weight loss goals. Personally, I have not found carrots to effect me at all and I eat them often and in great quantity. I snack on baby carrots, add carrots to soups, stews and salads, and include a carrot in my morning smoothie. Use your journal and experiment to see if carrots are keeping you from losing weight.

For your diet efforts to be successful you must start journaling! You can't find a solution if you don't know the variables. Keeping a food and exercise journal will give you the power to assess where you are for the day nutritionally and make food/activity choices to keep you on track. Don't go more than 3 hours without eating and try not to eat within an hour (preferable more) of bedtime. Lose the midnight snacks! Try eating more regularly throughout the day to see if that curbs the night time hunger. It could be your body is not getting enough of a specific nutrient, use your journal to assess your needs. Before you eat a midnight snack, try just drinking a glass or two of water. Often thirst is mistaken for hunger. If you must eat, sugar-free jello and soup broth (with nothing in it, just plain broth) are great choices. For something more substantial try eating a snack with a combination of carbs, protein and fat, e.g. peanut butter (watch the portion size!) on apple slices; low fat cheese on whole wheat crackers; raw veggies, esp. broccoli and cauliflower, dipped in vinegar & oil dressing.

Hope this helps - sorry for the long post!

Use the recipe analyzer on this site to determine the number of calories per serving of your soup. Then you can adjust the serving size, or change ingredients. I know my own vegetable soup worked out to 80 calories/cup. Try making your own chicken broth (and you'll have a supply of cooked chicken for lean, highprotein dishes) or buy the stock that's packaged in the aseptic boxes, instead of the canned or cubes. It's made from actual chicken and is much lower in fat. Tastes better too!

Thanks everyone!!

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