How To Lose Weight and Keep It Off

by - 09:08:00

It's no secret that most of us have probably tried dieting at some point in our life. Some of us will have seen success, others not, but the common trend is the weight creeping back at some point. That's the problem with diets, they aren't sustainable. While you might have been able to stick to Atkins for 8 weeks pre-holiday, it's not a healthy lifestyle. So after you're allotted diet time was up and you lost the weight, you probably went back to eating how you used to. Today I wanted to share with you a few ways you can achieve and sustain weight loss as part of a healthy lifestyle. Meaning that even after you've slimmed down, you'll be eating better, feeling fantastic and keeping it off.

My most important tip of all is not to demonize a particular food. A bit of everything in moderation is my cardinal rule when trying to lose weight. By saying particular foods are bad and denying yourself, it'll only fuel the desire even more. So when you finally give in, you'll probably eat more of whatever it is than you normally would. If you're diet is otherwise healthy, allow yourself a treat. But this can become a double edged sword, whereby you use food as an unhealthy motivator. I.e I've done this, so I can have that. This definitely doesn't help with weight loss so it's best to avoid doing this. But as I was saying, allow yourself a little bit. If you try to cut out the things you love, yes you'll lose weight but you will be miserable. Remember this is a lifestyle change and not a diet plan. I mean who can go without chocolate for life? Not this girl.

The next tip I have is to prepare all of your meals and snacks in advance. If you have food ready, you won't be reaching for convenience foods and unhealthier alternatives. My favourite thing about this, is that it encourages you to get into the kitchen and get cooking. Whether you knock up a soup or a stew, it's getting you engaged with your food and you know exactly what's going into it. Besides, nothing tastes as good as homemade! So grab some tupperware and get cooking. Don't get me wrong, convenience foods are great for when you're really stuck, but otherwise they're garbage. They're usually high in sugar, full of nasties and most of the time never leave us feeling full. Consequently, we eat even more. Next time you're down at Boots picking out your meal deal, have a see what's in it and the nutritional values. It might just surprise you. 

Moving on, and this fits nicely with the meal prepping, is the size of our portions. I know first hand that a portion generally equates to a plate full of food. Most dinner plates are pretty large, so you can imagine that our portion sizes are way out of whack. Instead of aiming to fill the plate or tub, be sensible. Do you really need half a plate of potatoes? No, so use your common sense. If you're struggling, aim for half of your plate to be vegetables and the rest whatever else you may be serving. Also don't feel obliged to eat everything. When your body is telling you it's full, stop. We all get a sense of achievement for finishing dinner, but it's not worth the upset tummy afterwards. 

This leads me to a really important point, listen to your body. You body is amazing, it can tell you so many things, including when to eat. We're constantly told we need three square meals a day. This may be true for some, but it's definitely not true for all. Some people will find having three meals overwhelming. So listen to what you're body's telling you. If you feel hungry, eat. It's that simple. It's very possible that you're gaining weight because you're eating when you don't need to be. I get that it's not the most sociable thing, but unnecessary consumption is  a sure fire way to gain weight. 

My final tip is the most obvious of all. Make better food choices as often as possible. Could you have had a banana instead of that chocolate bar for example. By making swaps like these, there's no doubt your helping your body and aiding the weight loss. If you really want the chocolate, go for it, but swap something else later in the day. Over time you might actually find yourself preferring the healthier choices, and good for you if you do. For me, this has been the best route. Over time I've come to prefer the healthier alternatives and I feel much better for it. It's now not even about swapping, they're decisions I make without feeling like I'm giving something else up. When I go for the kiwi's I don't think oh but the biscuits. I just wanted the kiwi's in the first place. 

As I said, these are things that have worked for me, that might help you. I'm by no means a dietitian or specialist. The most important thing to remember is that it's a lifestyle change and not a diet that will make it stick. Aside from eating right, well all know the other component is exercise, but I'll leave that for another day. 

I hope you found this useful and as always, if you've got anything you'd like to add feel free to comment below. 

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