Replace Sweeteners with Fruit
Fruit has many benefits – vitamins, anti-oxidants, and fiber. It generally comes in a single serving and helps you feel full. Fruit juice is not a good substitute because juices often have added sweeteners and lack fiber.
Back in the 1920s, the grapefruit diet was all the rage. Turns out great-grandma was on to something. Research indicates that obese people who ate half a grapefruit before each meal dropped an average of 3 ½ pounds over 12 weeks.
No magic – they just make you feel full. Check with your doctor first because some medications don’t mix well with grapefruit.
Avoid bananas. Bananas are higher in calories than other fruits and they have less fiber, so you won’t feel full as long.
Fill Up on Soup
Eat a broth-based soup to feel fuller and eat fewer calories. Avoid the high calorie cream-based ones. If you choose pre-made soup, try for a low-sodium version.
Salt is important, but most Americans get plenty of salt in their diet. If the soup has pasta as a filler, leave it in the bowl.
Add a Lean Protein
To lose weight, eat good quality protein. Your body uses protein to build and repair muscles, organs, skin, and other tissues as well as making enzymes, hormones and even neurotransmitters.
Protein makes you feel full longer than any other food type. For both men and women, increasing the amount of lean protein reduced snacking and increased weight loss.
Lean protein includes beef, chicken, pork, salmon, trout, and whole eggs. Obviously, how you prepare the lean meat determines how healthy it is. Frying your protein is not a good way to eat lean protein. Smothering it in barbeque sauce or tartar sauce is not particularly beneficial.
Vegetarians have some excellent options for protein. Quinoa, chia seeds, seitan, and of course, beans are excellent sources of quality plant-based proteins. Plant protein is every bit as healthy as meat protein.
Eat Your Veggies
Raw, steamed, or roasted veggies are good for you! Veggies are made of fiber and fiber keeps you feeling full longer. They are also full of a variety of vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, and other important nutrients. Do your best to eat a rainbow of veggies with every meal to maximize the nutrient intake.
Boiling veggies robs them of nutrients. A nice salad fills you up. Roasted veggies are almost sinfully good. Just don’t fry them, slather them in butter or dressing, or top them with more than a sprinkle of cheese.
White bread is bad for your waist line. Eating two slices of white bread a day is linked to a 40% greater risk of gaining weight.
To lose weight, skip white breads, pastries, cake, and breaded items. Try to eat whole grain breads. But don’t eat a lot of bread, regardless!
Indulge in Dessert
Meals are much nicer when they end on a sweet note. Fruit is a terrific dessert. If chocolate signals the end of a good dinner, try a square of dark chocolate.
A small bit of dark chocolate is as satisfying as a stickie sweet dessert.
Choose water, unsweetened tea, green tea, and black coffee over any other drink.
Alcohol won’t help you lose weight and neither will “diet” sodas.
It is not about dieting or eating a magical food, it is about changing your approach to eating. Give up sugar and artificial sweeteners, add protein and fiber rich foods, and decrease calories to help you lose weight.
Once you make an effort to eat more healthily, you’ll find it easier to lose weight. And don’t forget the exercise!