20 Ways To Eat Better, Lose Weight And Forget About Dieting
Yes, you can lose weight by making healthier food choices. And that can lead you to eat better and consume less calories.
Get focused to eat better, which can help you lose weight
You’d think the way to lose weight would be to make it your goal, but you really should make small changes to make a big impact.
The dietitian says: The reason big, overall goals fail is because they don’t keep you committed to a strategy. “Don’t try to take on all your dietary and lifestyle changes at once,” says dietitian Abby Langer. “Let each one become a habit first before moving onto the next change.” So take this advice with you when you consider these tips. And if you do go for more than one change, make sure they are compatible and not overwhelming.
It’s time you eat better by loading up on the healthy stuff.
The dietitian says: “Try to make your plate half vegetables for at least one of your meals a day,” says Langer.
Become a part-time vegetarian
Less meat in a diet has been shown to help you lose weight.
The dietitian says: “Eat meatless meals at least three times a week,” says Langer.
Make your own food
You know exactly what you are eating when you make it yourself.
The dietitian says: “Cook for yourself more,” says Langer. And make it fun! “If you don’t cook, enlist the help of a friend or family member to give you a tutorial, or take a basic cooking class to get yourself more comfortable in the kitchen.”
Don’t drink your sugar
Calories in drinks can sneak up on you, because you don’t feel full from a beverage like you would say a piece of cake.
The dietitian says: “Ditch the sugar sweetened beverages or cut them by half and decrease your intake slowly,” says Langer. “If you use sugar in your coffee, try using less.” Another tip, juice and sparkling water. She suggests a glass filled with half pomegranate juice and half sparkling water for a refreshing carbonated drink.
Time your snacks
Feeling hungry for too long can lead to an overindulgent meal. And snacking will help you lose weight.
The dietitian says: “If you’re finding yourself ravenous by the time you get home from work, have a snack in the afternoon at around 3 or 4 p.m. it will help prevent overeating later on.”
Don’t avoid fats
Actually omega-3 fatty acids are really good for hair, skin, nails, heart health, blood sugar and so much more.
The dietitian says: “Eat fatty fish like salmon, sardines, trout or halibut twice a week,” she says.
Eat out less
Avoiding eating out at all can be tough, especially because it’s how we get some face time with friends and family. But you can cap how often you do eat at a restaurant and still lose weight.
The dietitian says: “Limit your eating out to once a week – and this includes lunch,” says Langer.
Whole foods are no-brainers. But with packaged foods, avoid long lists of ingredients.
The dietitian says: “Choose foods that are simple, with as few additives as possible,” says Langer. And you don’t need to swear off juices, she adds. Just make sure they don’t contains no added sugar, colourant or filler juices.
An apple. A homemade energy ball. Even a drink of water will help satiate your appetite and lose weight.
The dietitian says: “If you’re going out of the house for a while, remember to bring a snack with you,” says Langer. “It will prevent you from resorting to purchasing snack foods that aren’t good for you.”
Enjoy food – with a level head and a balanced diet
When someone says you can’t have something, what’s the first thing you want. The same applies to food.
The dietitian says: “Don’t label foods as ‘good’ or ‘bad’,” says Langer. “There are no good and bad foods; all foods can fit into a healthy diet.” Of course, moderation is always key.
Third time’s a charm
Of course fitness is the way to lose weight. But it can be hard to remember or fit it in your day. So mark your calendar. And book yourself for some fitness three times a week.
The dietitian says: “Make a point to be active in an activity that you enjoy three times a week or more,” she says. “This can be anything – walking, Zumba and swimming – anything that gets you out and moving.”
Don’t go hungry
It’s about keeping your metabolism firing.
The dietitian says: “Eat regular meals and snacks,” she says. “Going too long without eating – more than four hours or so – may lead to overeating later on in the day.”
Your vibe really is your tribe.
The dietitian says: “Enlist the help of your family and friends,” says Langer. “If you’re trying to lose weight or reach a health goal, having people onboard can give you the support you need to succeed.”
Be weary of the word “diet”
Packaged foods, even diet-labelled packaged foods, are still processed foods.
The dietitian says: “Shift from diet food to whole foods,” says Langer. “Whole foods are usually more satisfying. For example, ditch the fat-free dairy for two per cent or higher. You’ll be surprised how much less you need and how much better it tastes. Diet foods aren’t necessarily healthier: Low fat peanut butter has more additives than regular fat peanut butter, for minimally less calories and fat. Eat the real thing and enjoy.”
Up your potassium
When it comes to workouts, people think about protein, but don’t forget about this nutrient.
The dietitian says: “Make sure you fuel your workouts with potassium-rich snacks, like POM Wonderful pomegranate juice,” says Langer. “A 250-millilitre serving has as much potassium as a whole banana, and can help replenish lost electrolytes after you exercise.”
Don’t eat and tech
Technology can make life easier, sure. But it’s a big distraction when eating, which can sabotage your goal to lose weight.
The dietitian says: “Make an effort to turn off your technology and move away from your desk or TV while you eat,” says Langer. “Distracted eating can make us eat more. It can also take away from the pleasure and fulfillment of a meal. When possible, eat with others.”
Meal prep like a pro
Sticking with a healthy eating routine means having healthy foods ready to eat.
The dietitian says: “Batch cook on Sundays,” recommends Langer. What should you prep? “Two to three vegetables – raw and cut up, or cooked, or salad greens – one or two proteins, and a pot or pan of starch. Make everything simply so it can be repurposed into multiple meals over the week.”
You don’t have to give up all treats. Just don’t over indulge.
The dietitian says: “Limit sweets to three times a week,” says Langer. “If you usually have a dessert daily, cut down as much as possible – this includes homemade treats.”
Keep calm and eat healthy
Sometimes being too restrictive can have the complete opposite effect on how you feel about yourself.
The dietitian says: “Lose the diet mentality,” warns Langer. “Diets don’t work. Relax and enjoy your food. Respect your body by giving it healthy food and moving it more. Stop trying to fit into society’s definition of what beautiful is. You’re beautiful the way you are.”