- 1 SEE A PROFESSIONAL
- 2 STICK TO YOUR SIZE
- 3 EAT TOGETHER
- 4 STOP BEFORE STUFFED
- 5 BE PREPARED TO WORK
- 6 STICK TO THE SAME TIMES
- 7 EAT MORE OFTEN
- 8 THE CHINESE WAY
- 9 IN THE KITCHEN AT PARTIES
- 10 KNOW YOUR WEAKNESS
- 11 SAVOR THE FLAVOR
- 12 GET REGULAR
- 13 FRUIT TEST
- 14 DRINK AWAY HUNGER
- 15 THE ORIGINAL WAY
- 16 KEEP THE TREATS
- 17 TUNE IN
- 18 DAY BY DAY
- 19 MOVE ON
- 20 LOOK AT YOUR FRAME
- 21 DON’T DO A DIET
- 22 KEEP A DIARY
- 23 EXERCISE YOURSELF HAPPY
- 24 ACTIVATE YOURSELF
- 25 GET SOME THERAPY
- 26 SUMMER STRETCH
- 27 KNOW YOUR PITFALLS
- 28 YOUR OWN JUDGE
- 29 EAT WHEN ALERT
SEE A PROFESSIONAL
If you’re having trouble cutting sugary and fatty foods out of your diet, or you’re trying to stick to a plan but the weight just isn’t coming off, consider consulting a dietitian. Most offer a one-off consultation that might help kick-start you into making some basic practical changes & lose weight as well.
STICK TO YOUR SIZE
One of the most dangerous temptations in dieting is the tendency to add a little bit more food. If you’re on a calorie-restricted diet plan, make sure you stick strictly to portion sizes or weigh food carefully to avoid this common pitfall.
Try to get your whole family to sit down together for a meal at the table. It’s thought that children from families who regularly eat together have healthier attitudes to food and are less likely to be obese than those who don’t. Studies have shown that people who eat while watching TV eat more and enjoy their food less than those who sit at a table to eat.
STOP BEFORE STUFFED
Try to eat until you are sufficiently satiated, rather than completely stuffed! In other words, try stopping when you feel 75-80% full and only eat more if you feel you really need . To do this, you will have to learn to get “in touch” with your feelings of hunger and fullness.
BE PREPARED TO WORK
One of the most common reasons people reach for biscuits and other unhealthy snacks is that they’re simply less work. Get ahead of yourself and spend 15 minutes or so peeling and chopping vegetables like carrots, fennel, cucumber, peppers and celery, or fruits such as apples and pears. Bag it all up and keep it in the fridge so you can reach for it whenever you want.
STICK TO THE SAME TIMES
If you often resort to snacking between meals, take a proactive step towards eliminating your bad habits by eating meals at regular times for a week. This will help keep calories more balanced and reduce hunger pangs and cravings.
EAT MORE OFTEN
If you find it hard not to snack between meals, eat more often – three meals a day doesn’t suit everyone so try changing your routine to five or six smaller meals a day. For some people it’s a way of eating that can help to keep blood sugar levels stable and keep you mentally alert and physically energetic all day long.
THE CHINESE WAY
Trick yourself into eating smaller portions of rice and noodle dishes by using chopsticks instead of a fork. The longer you take to eat, the more chance you give yourself to fill up before you’ve finished your plateful.
IN THE KITCHEN AT PARTIES
Many people find it difficult to control their eating at parties. As you arrive, take a look at the food and choose what you eat. Fill up a plate rather than grazing at will, when you are much more likely to overeat.
KNOW YOUR WEAKNESS
You know you have certain times of the day when you reach for snacks, try to preempt the problem by preparing a light meal or healthy snack ahead of time so you can reach for it when the craving strikes. Keep a bowl of fruit near your desk on your kitchen table so you can pick from the bowl at any time during the day.
SAVOR THE FLAVOR
Take a more Buddhist attitude to food by savoring every mouthful. Make yourself mindful of what you eat, what the flavors really taste like and how the food feels in your mouth. Pause after each mouthful and think about, whether you really want more. Slowing down will make feel fuller.
Eat regular meals – skipping meals can lead to hunger, often resulting in overeating. When you’re very hungry, your blood sugar levels plummet and it’s tempting to forget about good nutrition. Snacking between meals can help curb hunger, but make sure the snack is healthy rather than high in fat or sugar and don’t eat so much that your snack becomes an entire meal.
Some people find that eating fruit after a meal can cause bloating and gas problems –_ if you think fruit affects you in this way, try eating it an hour or two before or after a meal and see if it feels any different.
DRINK AWAY HUNGER
Are you really hungry or dehydrated? Lack of water can make you think you’re hungry, leading to overeating and weight gain. Cravings for salty foods are also a telltale sign of dehydration. Drink 2 liters (4 pints) of water daily at regular intervals.
THE ORIGINAL WAY
A great food to choose for working lunches is sushi, especially if you add a healthy salad or vegetable serving which will add some fiber to the meal. The fish will give you a boost of omega-3 oils to help brainpower, but make sure it’s really fresh.
KEEP THE TREATS
Diets that cut out all the treat foods have been shown to be ineffective at keeping weight off in the long term. Instead, choose a healthy-eating style where you minimize (but don’t cut out completely) unhealthy foods, replacing them with better choices. If nothing’s forbidden, you won’t be tempted by it because- “forbidden fruit is always the sweetest”.
Eat when you’re hungry, not just out of habit. Getting more in tune with your body’s requirements will help you maintain healthy eating habits – by listening to what your body really needs instead of simply reaching for the biscuit tin every time you’re bored, upset or angry.
DAY BY DAY
Make changes gradually and don’t expect to totally revamp your eating habits overnight. Start to remedy excesses or deficiencies with modest changes, which will add up to create positive lifelong habits. For instance, if you don’t like the taste of skimmed milk, try semi-skimmed; replace white rice with brown basmati, and so on.
Be realistic about your target weight. It’s likely to be unhealthy to aim to maintain your teenage weight as you get older, as your natural body weight increases with age as well as being affected by factors such as pregnancy. If you eat a healthy, balanced diet, the chances are your weight is fine.
LOOK AT YOUR FRAME
Don’t be fooled by the media into thinking you should be thinner than is healthy – set yourself a sensible target weight which isn’t hard to maintain with a healthy diet and normal levels of activity. If you often feel genuinely hungry or exercise too much, your target weight is probably too low.
DON’T DO A DIET
The word “diet” has negative connotations and can reduce body image – its a sad fact that most people who admit to dieting don’t manage to keep the weight off. Instead of concentrating on losing weight, make good health your aim.
KEEP A DIARY
If you’ve been trying to diet and not succeeding, try keeping a food diary for a week or two – write down everything you eat and drink. Seeing it in black and white can help you to identify vulnerable times of day, unhealthy eating patterns and areas you might not be aware of .
EXERCISE YOURSELF HAPPY
Studies have shown that one of the best ways to prevent overeating is to take regular exercise. This is because exercise releases feel-good endorphin in the body, and people who feel happier and more fulfilled are less likely to overeat.
Metabolism varies among individuals but only by up to 100 calories daily, so claiming a slow metabolism isn’t an excuse for weight gain. Instead, look to the details of how you eat and how active you are, counting up hidden calories and making practical changes.
GET SOME THERAPY
If you feel your eating is out of control, or you struggle to implement changes for more than a few weeks at a time, perhaps it’s time to consider some kind of behavior therapy, which aims for gradual but permanent changes in behavior alongside a sensible eating plan. Ask your doctor for advice on what kind of therapy or counselling to try.
Throughout the summer, eat in line with the longer daylight hours so that your food intake is spread more evenly throughout the day. This usually means smaller, more frequent meals, which will make sense if it’s hotter, too.
KNOW YOUR PITFALLS
To improve your eating habits, you first have to know what’s wrong with them. Do you add a lot of butter, creamy sauces or salad dressings to your meals? Rather than eliminating them completely, just cut back your portions instead.
YOUR OWN JUDGE
Don’t let other people determine how much you eat. Ask to serve yourself if you’re out, and don’t listen to friends or colleagues who say you should eat more or less. Be your own judge of what’s a healthy portion for you.
EAT WHEN ALERT
Don’t eat first thing in the morning, before you are fully awake, or last thing at night because your mind is not alert at these times and you might overeat without meaning to.
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References:  Hsieh SD, Muto T, Murase T, Tsuji H, Arase Y. Eating until feeling full and rapid eating both increase metabolic risk factors in Japanese men and women. Public Health Nutr. 2011 Jul;14(7):1266-9. doi: 10.1017/S1368980010003824. Epub 2011 Feb 3.  Dehydration Causes, Incidence & Risk Factors. Pubmed Health. A.D.A.M. Medical Encyclopedia.