When most people think about losing weight and eating, they think about dieting. Well, unfortunately, all of the fad diets out there tend to cause people to gain weight. Why? Because they starve them to death and the person eventually breaks down and eats everything in sight because they are so darn hungry. They also deprive them of the foods that they love. This is not a way to lose weight, nor is it a way to live. You only cause yourself stress, which causes you to gain weight!
So, in eating right there a few tips that you can follow every day and they are not going to deprive you of the foods that you love, but treat those foods as luxury items so you enjoy them that much more.
Eat fresh fruit and vegetables that have high water content. These are foods like tomatoes, watermelons, cantaloupe, kiwi, grapes – you get the idea. All of those fresh and flavorful juicy fruits and veggies are good for you. These items contain about 90 to 95% water, so you can eat a lot of these and they will fill you up without adding on the pounds.
Eat fresh fruit instead of processed fruit. Anything that is processed as more sugar. Processed and canned fruits also do not have as much fiber as fresh fruits.
Increase your fiber intake as much as you can. This usually means eating more fruits and veggies.
Veggies are your friends when it comes to shedding pounds. There are tons of options here and you may even want to try some you haven't had in the past. The leafy green varieties are the best and you always want to work in a salad when you can. Salads are packed with nutrients as long as you don't pour too much dressing on and load them with too much cheese. The leafy greens also have a lot of natural water.
Be intelligent about what you eat. Do not eat just to eat. Animals eat on instinct; people eat when they know their body needs it. Do not be an impulse eater.
Watch everything you consume from the food itself to what you top it with. Garnishments and condiments can sabotage a healthy meal because they are typically high in fat.
Get a handle on the sweet tooth. This does not mean you can't have your sweets; just do not eat them as a meal. Always remember that these sweets end up adding to an area that you don't want them to add to. Don't deprive yourself either though, because then you will eat twice as many as you should.
Set meal times and stick to them. Try to have your meals at specific times and eat them at that time. An eating pattern will help you to control what you eat and when you eat it. Also, it is better to have 5 small meals a day rather than just one or two huge meals. Just eating once a day makes your body feel as though it is starving, which packs on fat instead of using it as fuel. Also, don't wait until you are starving to eat. This only makes you overeat until you're stuffed.
Eat only when you are hungry. Be sure to drink a glass of water first to determine if you are hungry or if you are thirsty. Many people tend to eat when they see food. It doesn't mean they are hungry; they just want to eat it. Don't eat anything you are offered unless you are hungry. If you feel you must eat it out of being polite, just nibble, don't have a meal.
Try not to snack between meals, but if you must have a snack make sure it is a healthy one. If you travel a lot try to find healthy snacks and not junk food.
Veggies make great snacks. They can get you through the hunger pains if you are having them. Carrots are great because they satisfy hunger and are packed with nutrients.
Counting calories is a good idea for those must-have food items. If it is a packaged food item, then it will have the calories on the packaging. Be sure to pay attention to serving sizes in terms of calories as well. An Otis Spunkmeyer muffin is intended to be two servings, so you have to double the calories listed. This is where food producers get tricky and you can't fall into their trap.
Work off the extra calories by the end of the week. If you feel you have splurged too much this week, be sure to get to the gym or go walking a little longer to work off those extra calories you have consumed.
Stay away from all things fried. If it is breaded, it should be baked. Fried foods are immersed in fat and oil. Even after the excess has oil has been drained away, there is still oil absorbed into the food item itself.
Don't skip meals. You should have, at the very least, three meals a day, but preferably five small meals. This will keep you from getting hungry during the day and overeating out of starvation.
Just like fruits, fresh vegetables are better than those that are canned. It is even better if you can eat your veggies raw. When you cook them, you cook away the nutrients. If you must cook them, try to boil them to the point that there is still some crispness to them. Also, don't soak them in butter. If you can buy organic and pesticide-free veggies, that is even better.
Don't eat more than one egg per day. It is best if you can reduce your egg intake to three a week.
Chocolates should be treated as luxury items. Buy the good stuff and only eat them every once in a while. If you savor each bite, you will experience that much more joy in eating them and they will taste even better.
Eat foods from all of the food groups each day. This is a great way to ensure you are getting all the nutrients your body needs and it helps to ward off any diet deficiencies. Also, don't eat the same foods all the time. Experiment so that you don't get bored with the same old diet.
Try to eat breakfast within an hour of waking up. This is the best way to give your body the jumpstart it needs. Don't wait until you are really hungry. Breakfast is important, but you don't need to stuff yourself. The idea is that you're breaking the fast from not eating all night.
Your diet should include all aspects of the food groups including carbohydrates. Your diet needs to be about 50-55% carbs. Carbs are a great source of energy. Those diets that prohibit carbohydrates are actually harming you and only making you crave them that much more. Your diet should cause you to be deficient in anything.
Proteins should make up only 25-30% of your diet. Far too much emphasis is put on meat as the main part of your meal. In actuality, it should be considered more of a side dish rather than the main course.
Fats should make up 15-20% of your meal. This is all the fat your body needs. A lot of this is going to be in your diet in the form of cream, sugar, and the like.
Eat more white meat than red meat. White meat includes chicken, fish, and some other poultry. Red meat includes beef and pork.
Try to go as vegetarian as you can. This is a healthier lifestyle, even if you can't cut meat out completely. The more fruits and veggies you can eat the better. The more meat you cut out, the more fat you can cut out of your diet as well. However, protein is important, so be certain that your option allows you to maintain good protein levels. For more, read our post on the benefits of becoming a vegetarian.
White bread is good, but high fiber multigrain bread is much better. Multigrain bread is another way to add more fiber to your diet and good protein.
Pork does not assist in weight loss in any way. The less pork you eat, the better off you will be when trying to lose weight. Pork has a high-fat content and includes food items such as bacon, ham, and sausage.
Limit your sugar intake as much as possible. If you must have sweeteners in your coffee and tea, try to find an artificial sweetener that you don't mind the taste of. However, these things are not all that healthy either and should be limited as well.
Try grazing five to six times a day. These are those small meals we discussed earlier. Some people lose weight better when they never feel hungry and grazing on healthy food items can do this for you. Plus, it keeps your metabolism working, which will burn fat naturally.
Don't worry about cheating but don't cheat for a meal. Eat sweets and your favorite cheat food for the flavor only. If you want dessert after dinner, share one with the whole family. You'll get the flavor, but not the pounds.
Watch your fat intake. Each fat gram is 9 calories. If you know your total calories then you can figure the amount of fat in those items.
Take it easy on the salt and try to cut what you use in half. Salt is one of the main causes of obesity.