When it comes to weight loss, who doesn’t want simple tricks? Most of us would love to see 20 pounds shed off just because we cut back on the maple syrup on our pancakes in the morning. That won’t do it. But some simple tips will help that scale dwindle with time and you won’t feel deprived in the process. Here’s 5 of the simplest tips I have found that will actually work to help you lose weight.
Sometimes You Are in the Mood to Crash, Sometimes You’re Not
Sometimes you are motivated to crash diet – get that weight off as fast as you can. As a Family Physician and obesity-medicine advocate, I usually find this occurs at times of great external motivation – a family wedding, family photos, or a high school reunion. Patients come in begging you to help them lose weight and it needs to be FAST.
Then there is the rest of your life. That’s when internal motivators become key for weight loss. And those internal motivators, unfortunately, don’t always have the came level of discipline behind them. I blame that on a lack of urgency – you can get to it tomorrow. A health scare like a heart attack will get you there but just “being healthier” is a little less likely.
At times like this, easy tips and small changes can still make a big difference over time. Dr. Brian Wansink, Director of the Cornell Food and Brand Lab, writes about this in his book Mindless Eating, which happens to be one of my favorite books I have read on obesity.
According to Dr. Wansink, small changes and introducing MINDFUL eating will not result a 20-pound weight loss in 2 weeks but it will result in a 20 pound weight loss in a year. And you will be more likely to avoid the dreaded rebound phenomenon of weight regain. Incorporating easy strategies without elimination diet is the key to gradual weight loss.
5 Simple Tips for Weight Loss
Keep the Candy Bowl Empty
My one-year-old daughter helped me realize how badly our family needed to look at our dietary choices recently after an interaction with the candy bowl. She saw me grabbing candy from it daily and decided she wanted some as well – if Mom liked it, so would she.
Within a week, she went from sweetly pointing at the candy to throwing complete fits if she didn’t get a piece. I am an admitted sugar addict and I was creating one at one-years-of-age. And I know I’m not alone. Chances are your family has some dietary addiction just like that.
What food disappears as soon as you bring it in the house? Where are you placing foods that make you WAY more likely to binge on them? It is a SIMPLE place to eliminate as a start.
The candy bowl at our house went empty and has been ever since. My one-year-old hasn’t noticed the difference. Think about that impact on not only your waistline but equally important the habits of your kids.
You Pick Two
And I don’t mean go to Panera and buy the You Pick Two special. Although, that actually is exactly what I mean. If you are a person who dines out frequently, you probably have a habit. Likely you get a glass of wine or a beer, maybe an appetizer, definitely a main course, and possibly dessert. Add to that the bread the waiter brings and you have WAY too much food in front of you.
So, when you go out for a nice evening (or maybe even lunch), PICK TWO. And I won’t even try to control which two you pick. If you want an appetizer and a drink, I won’t judge. An appetizer and dessert are options or even a drink and dessert. Go wild and crazy. But you can’t have more than two “courses” with your meal. And drinks, such as alcohol, soda, and shakes, do count as a course. Sorry.
Ask for Dressing on the Side
I’m not one of those girls who can drizzle a little balsamic vinegar over a salad and really enjoy it. If you are, more power to you. But I want a yummy dressing if I’m actually going to go for the salad instead of the steak.
The problem is that enough salad dressing will make you wish you picked the steak in terms of weight loss. Many dressings are so high calorie and high fat that they destroy your “healthy” meal. What’s a girl to do?
Here’s what you do: dip your fork in the dressing instead of piling it on. You will get the flavor with every bite without the loaded calories. And don’t be like my husband and pile that fork FULL of bleu cheese dressing for every 1 piece of lettuce – the man asks for 2 servings of dressing every time. The flavor is all that you need and you will get that with a simple dip.
Be the Last Person to the Table
If speed eating and going back for seconds before everyone else is halfway through their meal is an issue for you then you need to meet my husband. He is the king of this.
And he is also the first to the table. For easy weight loss, change that. Be the last person to sit down to eat and pace yourself with the slowest eater at the table.
Think about the slowest eater in your family. Chances are they do not have the biggest weight issue. Slow eaters tend to actually get full before they finish finish their meal. And, because of that, eat less at a meal. Give it a try!
Drop the Snacks
Snacking is my other weakness. I love snacks. More than meals most of the time really. But snacks are almost always high calorie, high carbohydrate, and not nutritious at all. If you are that rare person who can honestly say you only snack on vegetables, you probably aren’t reading this post anyway.
And snacks really don’t have a purpose. It is unlikely that you are so hungry that you just had to have a snack to prevent completely passing out. More than likely, you are snacking for EMOTIONAL reasons – you are sad, happy, bored, annoyed, or just used to it.
Snacks have become a part of our lives but they are completely frivolous for most of us. Drop them and the weight will come off.
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Simple Solution: Weight loss doesn’t have to be radical. In fact, slow and steady may be just what you need at this point in your life. Use these 5 simple tips and the weight will come off.
For more Mindless Eating tips, check out: http://mindlesseating.org/
Interested in more about The Obesity Code, check out: https://obesitycodepodcast.com/
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