10 Easy Diet Tips That Will Work For You!
Losing weight is often one of the best things a person can do for optimal health and wellness. Being overweight can damage to the heart, contribute to high blood pressure and be hard on the joints, to name just a few of the problems that may be caused by carrying around excess weight day after day. Dropping even a few pounds can pay off handsomely in increased health and energy.
While losing weight is extremely important for the overweight or obese, dieting can be intimidating and is difficult for many people. Successful, permanent weight loss requires diligence and a workable plan. When contemplating weight loss, choose a nutritionally sound diet plan. Regardless of which diet is being pursued, try these helpful tips to make the whole dieting experience easier.
Diet Tip #1 – Eat Less, Move More
Excess weight is simply excess calories stored on the body. To get rid of excess weight, eat fewer calories than are consumed and get some exercise. While this may seem elementary, too many dieters do not adhere to this basic principle. The added advantage of eating less and moving more is that exercise will increase fitness while simultaneously burning calories, which in turn will increase the metabolism and cause the body to use more calories even while at rest.
Diet Tip #2 – Try Diet Friendly Substitutes
Consider where calorie-saving food substitutions can be made. Read labels or do some research online to determine where significant savings can be achieved. For instance, replace whole milk with low fat milk, or better yet, fat-free milk. In recipes, substitute plain yogurt for sour cream. For a snack, choose raw vegetables over chips or crackers. To get the salt to stick on popcorn, use a light coating of cooking spray rather than melted butter.
Diet Tip #3 – Beware of Low Fat or Fat Free Foods
Carefully read the label on any item claiming to be low fat or fat free. High calorie substitutes, such as high fructose corn syrup, are often used to enhance flavor and texture in low fat or fat free foods. In addition, to increase palatability, many of these items rely on chemical substitutions that may be undesirable.
Diet Tip #4 – Become Familiar with Portion Sizes
Use a measuring cup and diet scale to determine exact portions. Correct portion size is often difficult to estimate, leading to over consumption of the food in question. After portion estimation proficiency is achieved, periodically recheck portion weights or measures to ensure continued accuracy.
Diet Tip #5 – Use Small Plates and Cups
Make portion control easier by using smaller plates and cups. Having food arranged so that the plate appears full eases feelings of deprivation. Use a measuring cup to determine the exact volume of various cups or glasses. Use a permanent marker to indicate specific measurements on frequently used items. Purchase a toddler or child-size divided plate to help control food portions at meals or when snacking.
Diet Tip #6 – Forego Second Helpings
Limit meals to one helping of each food. Eat slowly, putting the fork down between each bite. Drink plenty of water and extend mealtime as long as necessary to ensure that satiety is reached without indulging in a second helping. Include raw vegetables with each meal to provide a healthy, low calorie option if the temptation for seconds cannot be resisted.
Diet Tip #7 – Control the Environment
Make dieting as easy as possible. Stock the pantry and refrigerator with diet friendly foods. To avoid relapse in times of weakness, get rid of all high calorie foods or any item that may lead to uncontrolled consumption. Have appropriate snacks on hand at work or in the car. Make wise food choices easy by preparing meals at home and taking a lunch each day rather than eating out and relying on willpower.
Diet Tip #8 – Eat on Purpose
Don’t be afraid to get in touch with hunger. Discover what true hunger really feels like. Treat this as research and document all findings. Observe what happens to the body as hunger approaches and how long it takes the physical feeling of hunger to subside even when no food is consumed. Also, pay attention to any emotional reactions that may arise. Strive to develop a sense of actual hunger so that eating becomes a purposeful activity designed to sustain the body only rather than fill other needs.
Diet Tip #9 – Treat Yourself Well
Dieting can be hard work. Pamper yourself during this time by getting enough sleep and enjoying non-food-related treats. If a slip occurs, it is not the end of the world and should not be the end of the diet. A slip is nothing more than a momentary failure. Simply forgive yourself and move on without recrimination.
Diet Tip #10 – Drink Water Before Meals
Drinking a glass of water 15 minutes before you eat makes it easier to feel full sooner, and makes it harder to eat as much.