I don’t think I really need to include a disclaimer, but just in case: I am in no way, shape, or form a nutrition specialist or professional about this stuff. I’ve googled and experimented, and that is the extent of my knowledge. All I know is, these tips work for me AND for other people. So, I don’t see why they wouldn’t work for you, too!

eatwellplatelarge2

The Eatwell Plate

1.     Be patient. There are countless commercials and internet pop-ups that lure you in because of their promises to help you “Lose Weight Fast!” or “Get Abs In No Time!” Honey, these are scams, and despite the catchy slogans and the nutrition supplements that these companies are trying to sell you, they are not going to work miracles.

2.     Don’t go on a diet. (DUN DUN DUN…) The problem with diets is that you might eat great for the time you’re on it, but what about when you stop? Dieting doesn’t mean that you become immune to gaining fat. It’s just a temporary fix, and you’ll end up right back to where you started.

3.     Cut the crap. McDonalds, chicken nuggets, that six pack of beer after a hard day at work…  Resist those, and sing along to Aretha Franklin’s “I Will Survive,” because I promise, you will. Your body will happily adjust to this transition. I cut soda out of my diet a long time ago, and now, on the rare occasion that I treat myself to a Dr. Pepper or cherry limeade from Sonic, it’s way too sweet for my taste, and I end up throwing it out after a few gulps.

4.     Find healthy food that you actually like. It’s out there, I swear! In my opinion, chicken breast and a sweet potato sound a thousand times more appetizing than a TV dinner. Fruit and vegetables are delicious; who doesn’t love some mango and strawberry in the morning? Much better than a sugary cup of Starbucks coffee. Eating healthy doesn’t mean you’ve got to force bland foods down your throat.

5.     Portions, portions, portions! If it’s cheat day, or if you canNOT get that image of an ice cream sundae out of your head, it’s okay to treat yourself. Just do it in small portions. Make sure you measure things out instead of taking the whole bag of butter popcorn to the couch with you. Eat a lot of the good, and a little of the bad.

6.     Find alternatives. I have a big sweet tooth, and I’m the type of person who likes a variety in my diet. I’ve found ways to cure my cravings without splurging on fatty foods. Yopa! makes a greek yogurt with dark chocolate chips in it, which is a great treat for when I’m dying for some chocolate (especially during that time of the month). I’ve also swapped out candy for fruit, such as mango slices and strawberries. Fruit does a good job at waking me up in the morning, so, I like to pick a banana over a cup of coffee. This leaves me in a good mood with a satisfied tummy.

7.     Know what you’re eating. For example, did you know that wheat bread really isn’t that good for you? It turns into sugar when it enters your body. And most of those “healthy” frozen dinners are high in sodium, and not really healthy at all. When you’re grocery shopping, check the list of ingredients. If there’s stuff you can’t pronounce, chances are it’s not good for you.

8.     Welcome to your diet, where it’s “quality over quantity,” and the numbers don’t matter.  Put your scale in your closet, delete the calorie counter app off of your phone, and listen to me. These things do not matter! You can eat as little as you want, but that won’t make you skinny in time for summer. You could be 100 pounds, but that doesn’t mean that you’re healthy! With calories, there are ones that are good for you, and ones that are bad for you. Nuts, bananas, and peanut butter all have higher calories in them but they are the kind that your body likes. As for your weight… Remember that muscle weighs more than fat. Even more than that, what matters is that you’re taking care of yourself, not whether or not you’re dropping pounds.

Do you know what’s ironic about this whole thing? I was eating potato chips while writing this. But only a handful… Portion control!

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