If losing weight is at the top of your New Year’s Resolution for 2009, you are not alone. After October’s candy corns and chocolates, November’s turkey and pumpkin pies and December’s cookies and eggnog, have you put on weight? Well let’s start taking it off today!
1. Go Shopping! Stock your refrigerator and cupboards with healthy, high fiber foods. Buy low fat cheese, skim milk, light mayonnaise, lots of vegetables, fruit, lean meat and poultry, cooking spray, whole grain bread and legumes. Have a plan and know what you will be cooking for the week before you go to the supermarket so you will have everything you need. Having nothing to eat in your house is the best way to ruin your diet.
2. Cook Your Own Meals. Not only will you save money, but you will have complete control over what you eat. When you eat out, you have no idea how much fat is going into your food. Restaurants cook with a lot of butter and oil and the portions are larger than you should be eating.
3. Have Leftovers for Lunch. When I cook dinner, I like to make enough for leftovers the next day. This makes figuring out the points easy since you already know the point value from the night before. Warming up a nice bowl of homemade soup with a salad the next day beats getting take out or heating frozen meals.
4. Get Moving! Exercise doesn’t only burn calories, it motivates you and gets you out of a funk. Either join a gym or work out at home. I can’t stress the importance of exercise. If gyms are not for you, take dancing lessons, karate, or zumba classes. Find ways to burn extra calories in your day. Turn up the music when you are home and dance! Go for a post meal walk each every night or walk to the nearby store instead of driving there.
5. Don’t Starve. If you are hungry, chances are you will over eat at your next meal or make poor choices. Never skip meals and always carry healthy snacks with you like a piece of fruit or a bag of popcorn to hold you over till your next meal.
6. Bring A Dish To a Party. When I get invited to a party, I always volunteer to bring a dish. Bring a tray of crudites, a healthy salad or fruit salad for dessert. Not only will the host appreciate you bringing something, it will give you a healthy option as well.
7. Don’t Eliminate Your Favorite Foods. Instead, eat a lighter version of it. If you love pizza, make it with whole wheat crust and reduced fat cheese. Replace whole fat products with reduced fat versions like light mayonnaise, reduced fat milk and cheese. Broil or bake your meat instead of frying. Substitute some of the fat when baking cakes or breads with low fat buttermilk, nonfat yogurt, apple sauce or canned pumpkin. Even pureed baby food such as prunes or apricot can make a great substitution.
8. Keep a Food Journal. Write down everything you eat. You can’t keep track of your points if you are not writing it down. This also helps you to see where your bad eating habits are.
9. Break One Bad Eating Habit A Day. Each day make a commitment to yourself to break your bad eating habits. If you drink soda, start drinking water or tea. If you like cheese doodles, replace them with a healthier snack. Instead of changing everything all at once, do it gradually.
10. Downsize Drinks. Soda, smoothies, mocha lattes, and alcohol could add hundreds of calories to your day. Opt for water, seltzer and tea whenever possible. Make wine spritzers or drink light beer instead of sweet mixed drinks. And don’t forget to drink at least 6 cups of water a day.
For more tips on how to lose weight, read these Helpful Tips To Lose Weight.