Dieting is probably one of the first things people consider when they are trying to lose weight. “I need to cut out the fat, I need to cut out the carbs and the calories,” we tell ourselves.
However, there is a big problem with dieting. If you are simply restricting your food choices, there is a good chance you will dislike the food that you are eating and it will be hard to stay committed. The food you force yourself to eat while dieting may not be tasty and all you’ll be able to think of are those burgers and fries that actually satisfied you while you were living that high-calorie lifestyle.
Now you are living a life of, “Sorry I can’t go out tonight–I have to stick to my egg salad diet.” What happens next is you start planning “cheat days”–the one day that you can take a break from your diet and eat the foods that actually make you happy since you are not allowed to eat carbs, fat and calories.
If you are thinking to yourself, “I’ve been on a diet for four months and I’m still going strong!” that’s great but do you plan on eating this way permanently? Can you keep eating food that you don’t enjoy for the rest of your life and be happy this way?
According to Jeff Cavaliere, a personal trainer and physical therapist that has gained popularity on YouTube and other social media, if you want to maintain the weight that you lost, you are going have to continue eating the way you did to lose that weight. Cavaliere states, “I am only interested in long-term solutions and these are going to be meal plans that allow you to eat what you like in moderation depending on your specific body or performance goals.” It’s the long term results that are important. Sure, you can lose 25 pounds, but can you keep the 25 pounds off for good?
If you are on a diet and you enjoy what you are eating without cravings or cheat days. Don’t stop, keep going! If you can stay long term, then that’s all that matters.
But if, like most, you struggle with cravings, and want to eat healthy permanently, here are some tips: Start off by eliminating unhealthy food from your house. The convenience of crappy food makes it much easier for you to convince yourself with an, “I will only have a handful of Doritos,” which turns into half the bag. Throw away anything bad that you may be tempted to eat.
If you feel food cravings because you are not eating what you used to. Eat protein! Just try it. If you satisfy your hunger your body will no longer crave those foods because you are full. Eat a bowl of chicken, they contain a lot of protein. Not chicken nuggets, that’s fattening. Have a protein shake or a fat shake that will fill you up. Yes, I said fat. Unsaturated fats are healthy and lower your risk of heart disease.
You also need to get your whole family to eat healthy too. If you are the only one having a healthy lifestyle, it is hard to stay on track when three other people are having popcorn and Coca-Cola at 11:30 PM and you have given up late-night snacking. When no one is there to keep you motivated, you can lose that motivation and stop eating healthy.
So if you are struggling to stay on your diet, it’s not going to work. Sooner or later you won’t be able to handle it anymore. So instead of trying to find the “magic diet” look for recipes and start making the food, you are going to love forever.
Image Credit: Pixabay/Gurkanerol