Do you have trouble keeping on an even keel when it comes to losing weight? Have crash diets been a part of your life for far too long?
Have you gone to the extreme of starving yourself for most of the day, then falling completely off the wagon only to binge on junk food in the late-night hours? Have you tried to suppress your appetite by smoking cigarettes or taking diet pills?
None of these is a safe or healthy way to approach weight loss. And in fact, the more gimmicky some new diet or other might sound, the more likely that it is a less desirable method for losing weight and keeping it off.
Most fad diets and extreme methods for losing weight only result in the lost pounds coming back and then some. So the question you might be asking now is, what do I have to do to adopt a healthy eating mindset?
The basics of healthy eating for weight loss are as follows:
The majority of your meals and snacks should contain fresh vegetables. They can be raw, or lightly cooked. However, know that if you cook the color out of the vegetables so that they have turned a sad looking, wilted brown or yellow, that means that the nutrition has gone out of them. So keep your cooked veggies to fork-tender and bright green or orange.
Lean protein is important for building muscles as well as feeding the brain, which is also a muscle. This includes lean meats, like chicken or turkey breast, eggs, fish, and legumes. The perfect portion tends to be the size of your palm. So if you’re wondering how much meat to eat at one meal, do the “does it fit into my hand” trick and you should be good.
Healthy fats can be consumed in moderation. Think coconut, avocado, fatty fish, nuts and seeds and olives, as well as their oils. Healthy fats are necessary for brain function as well as for keeping the hormones in balance.
Whole grains are good for the brain and nervous system due to their B vitamin content. However, bread, rice and starch also count as carbs, so if you’re trying to lose weight you should limit your portions even if making the whole grain choice.
Avoid table sugar in all its forms, including cane sugar, corn syrup, and anything on the label that ends in “ose” such as fructose, glucose, sucrose and dextrose.
Eat minimal servings of saturated fats such as those present in fatty meats and cheese.
An example of a healthy, balanced meal might be a palm-sized serving of white-meat chicken, served with a healthy green salad with carrot shavings, cherry tomatoes and vinegar and oil based dressing.
A healthy snack could be half an apple with 3 slices of sharp cheddar cheese, or carrot sticks dipped in homemade yogurt dressing.