There is an army on the horizon. An army of fat cells that will do anything to thwart your plans of their anihilation. This army is sneaky and conniving. They pile up like flakes of snow in the night and next thing you know, you look like the Goodyear Tire man. Not very flattering if you ask me…..
Time to banish these insidious little demons and I have just the tools to help you wage war and win!
Tool # 1 ~ A Food Diary
This is a very simple but effective tool. Whether you record your food intake electronically on a computer or the old-fashioned way, with pen and paper, by writing down every piece of food that you put in your yap will open your eyes to your mindless eating habits. For one week, write down everything you eat. Whether you are trying to be good or not (but I hope you are), and at the end of the week, take a good look at what you have eaten, probably enough to feed a village in Africa no doubt.
This is your wake up call.
Using this tool has been proven to help reduce weight by making you *see* what you have been eating. You can now take the opportunity to adjust portion sizes and eliminate the bad food choices. This is the first step toward healthy eating habits. Here are 2 really good websites for recording your food intake and logging your exercise: www.livestrong.com/thedailyplate and www.fitclick.com They calculate calories, fat, sugar and fibre of your foods as well as water intake. I have been a member of The Daily Plate for the past 4 years, but found FitClick recently and am test driving that site to see if it is any better or worse than the Daily Plate. See which one you think is better (oh, they are FREE to use too).
Tool # 2 ~ Mini Meals
Instead of eating 2 or 3 overflowing plates of food a day, break your daily meals into smaller meals and spread them throughout the day. Eating 5 – 6 small meals a day is better for your metabolism and keeps your blood sugar from the spikes and crashes of the larger, heavier meals of your past eating habits.
Tool # 3 ~ Fruits & Veggies
These are almost free (calorie wise) foods that not only are good for you, but they provide the necessary fiber to help you feel fuller longer, thus curbing your appetite. Eating fruit and/or veggies between your meals helps regulate your blood sugar.
Tool # 4 ~ Elimination of Alcohol
I know, it’s a dastardly thing to ask of you. BUT…if you are serious about losing the weight, lose the booze for a 30 day period. If you feel you can not give up booze for 30 days, then you have a bigger problem that I can not help with. Alcoholic drinks are loaded with sugar, cutting these out of your intake will have an immediate and positive effect. You will notice you are not bloated and your jeans will not feel like they are going to split at the seams.
Tool # 5 ~ Exercise
Did you think I wasn’t going to mention this one? HA! Reducing food intake and making healthier food choices go hand in hand with exercise. If you have been a couch potato for too long, start off slow by walking for 15 minutes a day, increase by 5 minutes a day after a week, and every 2 or 3 days, increase the time until you are walking for one hour a day. From there, you can then go on to more strenuous activities, but make sure they are safe for you to do so. Always consult your physician before commencing any exercise plan.
Tool # 6 ~ Healthy Food Choices
Ditch the processed foods that are on the store shelves. Foods that are ready-made are full of preservatives, fat, excess salt and unnecessary sugar. Develop a variety of home-made, healthy recipes to feed yourself and your family. I will be highlighting some great recipes that you can make ahead and freeze in batches, perfect for those busy workdays!
There are plenty of great websites out there that offer healthy, low-calorie recipes. Here are a few of my favourites:
Even taking your old standby’s and lightening them up will do your waistline and heart good! For a list of healthy food substitutions, click here.
Tool # 6 ~ Water!
Plain water is all you need. Aim to drink 6-8 glasses of water a day, this helps flush your system of the nasties and drinking a full glass of water before you eat helps to curb your appetite!
Armed with the above tools – you will be ready to defeat the deadly fat cells in battle.
So let’s hear your battle cry!