In the last issue we tackled fat and explored a couple of tips to decrease the intake, therefore burning what the body has to help promote weight loss. Again, you only have to try to stick to even just one or two of these options consistently, for about a month, to see results. Remember to find a Registered Dietitian (RD) in order to further enhance your weight loss endeavor safely and effectively, tailoring it specifically to your needs. Go to: http://www.eatright.org/programs/rdfinder/
Bite it, write it, and win
Keep a food log and every time you have something to eat (even if just a bite), write it down and then look over your day to see your patterns.
Just the act of writing it down it keeps you more mindful and conscious of what you are eating says Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD, and author of The Flexitarian Diet. Discuss with an RD (http://www.eatright.org/programs/rdfinder/)where you have barriers and some options that will impact your diet.
Just the right measure
Cooking for one? Most college students are. Unfortunately that could mean eating for two or three sometimes. If leftovers are difficult to store, dinnerware is hard to come by, or fast-food options are the norm, portions tend to be above and beyond what is needed. Try measuring. Invest in some dollar store measuring cups and spoons or a food scale and follow the dietary guidelines (http://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/) for the portion of that food recommended to give you a visual cue of what the right amount is. You will quickly learn what to cut down to and veto the rest.
Other fast tips to try:
Pump up the volume, not the jam
Eating foods that fill you up at the start of your meal will stave off the need to grab the fried pickles. Try to start with a broth based soup, house salad, dressing on the side, and load up your main entre with fruits and vegetables. Keep the sugar content lower by having real fruit with yogurt, toast and on desserts rather than jams, sauces and artificial flavorings. The added fiber and vitamins and minerals will fill you up and save on calories.
Pack a protein punch
Protein will keep you full and the muscles you worked so hard to build in tip-top shape, after all they are made of protein. Try for 20 grams at each meal, and have a protein-rich snack paired with a carbohydrate (i.e. peanut butter and banana, low-fat chocolate milk, carrots and hummus). Some great protein sources include fish, poultry (lean), beans, couscous, rice, lentils, nuts, seeds and nut butters, low-fat dairy and dairy alternatives like soy, almond, hemp and vegetables.
Sit down and savor your food
Eating while studying, watching TV or driving somewhere often does not give us the mind-body connection needed to feel satisfied and fulfilled. It can lead to overeating and negative feelings toward food and its purpose.
Try sitting down regularly to a meal with little or no distractions and use your senses to notice the smell, texture, color and taste of the food. What is it that you like or dont like, wish you could change about it, or will try next time. It may seem awkward at first, but once you establish the connections between your thoughts and what you are doing related to the food, you will discover a world of changes and positive ways to influence weight loss.
Also try to read the nutrition facts labels and ingredients to know what a serving consists of and what you are actually eating. Be aware of low-fat foods, just because it is low-fat does not mean it is low-calorie or healthy.
Add spice and heat to your food like hot peppers. The antioxidant capsaicin will increase your metabolism, and the flavors will provide satisfaction without added calories or fat. Choose hot peppers, fresh herbs, or a variety of bottled spices and seasonings (without salt, of course).
Choose a buddy to try these changes with. Having someone to keep you accountable will influence the choices you make, impacting the end results.
Need to gain weight? Follow these tips as well, but instead of cutting portions, increase them. Incorporate nutrient dense, calorie rich snacks (like a protein shake with yogurt, fruit and whey protein or a tuna or lean turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread). It is still important to build muscle, get plenty of protein, and follow the dietary guidelines to do it in a healthy way.
Again, picking one or two of these options and sticking to them will make way for healthier habits to come and possibly leave fat behind for good.
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