It’s a common mistake. You step on the scale, don’t like the number you see and think “it’s time to go on a diet”. There is a good chance you have said this to yourself before and either didn’t manage to stay on the diet for more than a few days or maybe didn’t even try, discouraged by your past failures.
You are not alone. Knowing where to start and what diet to choose can be overwhelming. But success is not found in picking the right diet.
The key to a slimmer, healthier you lies in your self-discipline. We are not talking about the discipline it takes to stick to a diet but rather the discipline it takes to make real, achievable long term lifestyle changes.
It is almost impossible to achieve and maintain weight loss if you do not take steps to modify your lifestyle. Diets can potentially help you lose weight but are difficult, if not impossible, to sustain over any length of time.
This promises to find you back on the scale, pledging to yet another diet in no time. In fact, most dieters will regain their lost weight in one year’s time.
The solution is to consume less of the harmful foods such as sugar, salt and alcohol and replace them with nutritious, healthier foods like whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and drink plenty of water.
Foods high in fiber make you feel full and keep you feeling that way for longer periods of time. Many people find it helpful to start their day with a high fiber breakfast.
This will help energize you through the start of your day and reduce temptation to eat unhealthy, sugary snacks. It is also a great example of an achievable first step towards making long term lifestyle changes.
Next, consider your meal portions. As people have become used to super- sized servings, this has created a distorted view of what portion sizes should be.
It’s a good idea to reacquaint yourself with the appropriate serving sizes for various types of food. Step back and honestly evaluate the quantity and quality of the food you are putting on your plate.
Many of us have been taught to finish everything on our plates. It’s also time to learn to eat slower and listen to the natural cues of your body.
One final tip, people frequently confuse hunger for thirst. Make it part of your routine to reach for a glass of water when hunger strikes, if the hunger remains, follow up with a healthy snack or meal.
These are some simple ways to end dieting and begin healthy lifestyle changes. Monitoring and adjusting your food intake is a great first step but food is only half of the equation.
Increasing the amount of exercise you get daily is crucial to your success. Set an achievable fitness goal such as a fifteen minute walk per day or some other activity you enjoy.
Gradually increase your activity as your stamina improves. With a little self discipline, you can look and feel your best and say good-bye to diets forever!