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It’s that time of year again. When we break out the workout clothes and dust off the scale.
I’ll be honest with you, I never make New Year’s resolutions anymore. I don’t like putting a date on when I’ll ‘finally be perfectly on-plan’ . . . because let’s face it – we’ll never be perfect. Instead, healthy weight loss happens with a little common sense.
5 healthy weight loss tips
(If you’re dealing with thyroid, diabetes, a messed up metabolism from years of dieting, or other health concerns, please take that into consideration and follow your health care professional’s advice.)
1.) Eat unprocessed foods.
Processed foods contain additives that create intense food cravings. And it’s not just, “Hmm, I want a piece of pie” cravings but the kind of cravings that make you start a bag of chips and finish them all in one sitting – and then want more.
New York Times reporter Michael Moss says, “I was totally surprised. I spent time with the top scientists at the largest companies in this country and it’s amazing how much math and science and regression analysis and energy they put into finding the very perfect amount of salt, sugar and fat in their products that will send us over the moon, and will send their products flying off the shelves and have us buy more, eat more and. . .make more money for them.”
He went on to say, “Top scientists in the U.S. say that yes, for some people, the most highly loaded salty, sugary, fatty foods are every bit as addictive as some narcotics.” (source)
These food additives are suspected to mess with your metabolism as well.
Renowned metabolism scientist, Barbara Corkey says, “I don’t believe that overeating causes obesity. During my lifetime I have seen tremendous differences in food preparation and food packaging. . .When that novelty is associated with an increase in obesity and diabetes, is it rocket science to ask whether these things are related?” (source)
Note: I didn’t say *never* eat processed foods. We all know there are times we end up using them for convenience sake or because that’s the only choice before us. The key word is avoid. Make wise choices whenever you can, and don’t sweat the small stuff.
2.) Don’t extreme diet.
These are the diets that have you juicing for 10 days to lose 10 lbs. or eating less than 1,200 calories. They may start out with a big weight loss, but nine times out of ten it’s water weight. Extreme diets give you a confused metabolism – and when that happens the pounds come back along with a few or their friends. In the end, extreme diets end up causing you to gain weight instead of lose it.
3.) Don’t yo-yo diet and fall into binge eating.
We’ve all been there. We’re five days into a I-will-never-cheat-again-plan – and it happens. An unexpected dinner invitation, a child offering a cookie, a little box of Valentine’s chocolates from the one we love. . .There’s always the unexpected that tempts us to say, “Well, I’ll just go ahead and enjoy myself today/this weekend/this vacation and I’ll start my diet again on Monday/next week/after we get home.”
Yo-yoing between a strict diet and binge eating is a dangerous and unhealthy road to be on. Instead, follow tip #4.
4.) Practice moderation and self-control. (Gulp!)
Ditch the diets. Forget all the fancy packaged freezer meals. Throw away the calorie counting. Then how do you ‘diet’? With a consistent lifestyle of moderation and self-control.
When you’re home, eat what you know is healthy and eat it in moderation – don’t stuff yourself just because you’re eating healthy food. Eat until your satisfied and then. . .stop.
Does this mean you can never have a treat again? Absolutely not! Save that small slice of wedding cake or the modest scoop of ice cream for those special occasions that only come around once in a while. Make note of that coming event and when you get there, allow yourself a small slice. Enjoy it, be done, and go back to a healthy lifestyle.
5.) Eat more protein, a little less starch, and include healthy fats.
Whole and unprocessed foods like meat, eggs, healthy fats like coconut oil (which also boosts your metabolism), and dairy like homemade yogurt and raw milk, fill you up longer. This means you naturally eat less, but healthier. These foods nourish your body and give it a steady source of energy rather than the crash-and-burn of sugared diet foods.
These healthy eating tips eliminate a lot of sugar, starches, and food additives – the things that make you crave more. So the next time you head to the cupboard for a bag of Doritos, stop and think about these five tips and begin a lifestyle that will give you healthy and steady weight loss.
Keep an eye out next week for our next article in the 31 Day Challenge: Favorite Weight Loss Tools: Part 1.