Are you tired of diet tips handed out by someone with apparently unlimited income and time? Don’t you find it frustrating to get diet tips from someone who’s never been there? While I’m not sure the program I have used is national or not, I was pleased to find this in Maine. I have lost 100 pounds in the past seven months. Believe it or not I still have about twenty pounds to go. I’m not doing any powders, or packaged foods or shakes or any of that sort of non-sense. It’s just real food and a lot of common sense. Well it is also Doctor supervised and it does work. Here are ten real life diet tips for the rest of us.
1. Eating out? Restaurant portions tend to be enormous, and if it’s on the plate, we tend to eat it. But this seems to be an American thing. If you travel outside the US portion sizes are more in keeping with what you really NEED to eat and not the supersize it mentality. But if you live in the USA, and it’s possible, order from the kid’s menu, where portions are more reasonably sized. Or you can always slpit a meal between two people. And stay away from the salad bar if you intend on drenching your veggies in salad dressings.
2. Keep healthy snacks around and easily accessible. If you’re really serious about dropping the extra weight try keeping a bowl of fruit on the kitchen table, or a container of celery or carrot sticks in the refrigerator. Try to stay away from junk food, extra sodium and sugar in and/or on anything is an absolute no no. In other words, you’ll be more likely to grab something low-calorie and good for you if it’s easy to eat.
3. If you can’t get fresh vegetables then it’s acceptable to substitute frozen vegetables for canned. Canned veggies tend to be high in sodium, which you don’t need, and low in real nutrition, which you do. And you want to steer clear of the vegetables that are high in starch. Yeah yeah, I love them too, but I’ve really loved buying smaller clothes and hearing people tell me how fabulous and young I look a whole lot better.
4. If you must cook your vegetables invest in a vegetable steamer. Steaming is much healthier than boiling anything…and stay away from the microwave. Steamed food retains nearly all of its natural nutrients. An added benefit is always that steaming also retains more flavor which then makes it easier to consume vegetables as opposed to junk food. But I advocate for raw fresh vegetables the most. Have you ever had asparagus that was merely chopped and not cooked? Try it.
5. Lots of those of us who are or have been overweight have also not given eating the sort of time and respect it needs. So, try not to eat standing up and do dry to have a sit down meal, and definitely not in front of the TV. You really want to get out of the habit of just popping food into your mouth, which is something we do in fast food joints, when we’re flying from one point to another and almost always when we are sitting in front of the boob tube.
6. Now this next is somewhat hard to gauge. Some say graze as with six or more smaller meals a day and some say not to. I think I’d read up about the theory, ask your physician or dietary expert first and then make an informed decision that works best for you. I’ve tried both and the three meals a day works fine for me. Grazing just made me fatter.
7. As difficult as it may sound you’re going to have to give up the soda. Soda is essentially oodles of empty calories and lots of sugar. Even the fake sugar is bad for you. So either grab a fruit juice or flavored water instead of soda. You might even try unflavored water. It can be quite tasty.
8. Drink water. Even the FDA recommends at least 8 full 8 ounce glasses of water a day to keep your body working right. My food plan calls for a gallon of water a day. I have often been drinking more than that. Of course that means a lot of extra trips up and down the stairs, but that’s not all that bad for me either. And all that water does wash out a lot of excess fat. When you’re dieting, you should drink even more. It’s not just that full feeling – water helps your body digest foods properly and cleans out your system.
9. For the first several months of my diet program I was advised not to exercise as muscle tends to weigh more than fat, and they didn’t want me bulking up with a lot of muscle initially. And while I do belong to a local gym I often just do the minimal sorts of exercise I can do out of the gym. I also enjoy walking and to walk around my block takes me two miles. The funny thing is that without that 100 pounds it seems to go faster and easier.
10. One of the things that really helped me the best is accepting that I had had all of those fattening foods before and realizing that I could have them again just not in the sheer quantities that I had had them before.
Losing 100 pounds has been awesome. Keeping it off will be more of a challenge because there are so many good things out there to enjoy. And I have succumb to some cravings along the way. But nothing is insurmountable and getting back to the program is a good feeling too.
I was wearing a men’s size 40 pants. Now I am wearing a size 30 and they are loose and comfortable. Another really fabulous result is that I no longer have sleep apnea, and I also feel great.
If you live in Maine and are interested in knowing the program drop me an email or a comment on the blog and I will be happy to send them to you.