Your diet is anything you eat and it DOES NOT necessarily mean eating something in particular, or not eating certain food items. That is, unless you have decided to follow a particular diet.
Do you think you need to lose weight as soon as possible, perhaps before your best friend’s wedding, your new job, or your graduation ball? It is natural to have the desire to look your absolute best when there is an important event approaching – which is why fad diets are so popular.
However, the thing about weight loss is – the faster you lose it, the easier it will be for you to gain it back. And this is what happens to a majority of people who gain weight through strict diets. And it’s easy to understand why – once you stop taking the diet that helped you lose weight and go back to what you used to eat before, your body will ultimately return back to its original weight.
This is where calories are important. A calorie is the measuring unit of energy and the number of calories in food items helps us decide how much energy we can get once we consume them. Only a limited amount of energy is required to get through the day. You either need to consume fewer or burn more calories. You will gain weight if you continue consuming more calories than you need.
This may sound simple; losing weight, on the other hand, isn’t simple at all.
For starters, to lose enough weight to change the look of your body, you need to work through some serious changes to your eating habits. There is also another problem that most people face when they are aiming to lose weight. You will keep losing weight at a consistent rate, such as 4 lbs a month, for a certain period of time, by aiming for a smaller calorie goal. After you have reached a particular mark on the weighing scale, you’ll find that your weight is stuck. This happens because when you are losing weight, your metabolism becomes slower too. And the weight you lose is from the total mass; meaning that you are losing lean body mass as well.
The internet is filled with diets that claim to help you lose weight in a very short span of time, and because of the way they are structured, it is possible that you may achieve the weight you are aiming for with the said diets. However, these diets aren’t necessary the healthiest option. Because you are denying your body the energy it requires, or is used to getting every day, extreme diets can make you grumpy, cranky, slow, and lethargic.
You may also feel sad because sometimes, you eat food not for the taste, but for the feeling. The emotional aspect of eating is not to be ignored. You need a variety of colors, food items and tastes on your table to feel completely satisfied with your meals.
Allow us to tell you that there is nothing wrong with that. There is a reason for the term ‘comfort food’ and we aren’t going to tell you to miss any of that. However, at the end of the day, your diet plan adds up to YOU: Your choices, your restraint, and how committed you are to work towards your goal. The more determined you make up your mind to be, the easier it will be for your body to shed those extra pounds.
The obvious thing to do is to calculate the number of calories you need in a day and stick to the plan. Managing with lesser than your target is better, but don’t push yourself too hard. You must know that every calorie counts and by considering the calories of one meal at a time, you will be able to lose weight more easily.
The basic thing you need to do is opt for the food items that are more fulfilling but have fewer calories. Not only will this help you in managing your calories for the day, it will also make you realize the extra calories you were consuming without knowing it!
Everything comes with a choice and you will have to make smart (sometimes tough) choices to reduce weight by developing healthier life habits. This way, you will be able to achieve optimum health, look great, be happy and have more energy for the rest of the day. You will also be able to maintain your body weight this way.
Sure, it’s going to take time – but don’t all good things?
Tips to help you make healthy dietary changes
Just so you don’t feel overwhelmed with the idea of ‘lifestyle changes’, here are a few tips to help you lose weight in a faster and more healthier manner:
• Eat. Smaller. Portions.
• Think of how you will look in that dress: What could be more motivating?
• Reduce the fat from your food
• Eat more small meals throughout the day than two or three big ones
• Maintain a record of your calories in a food journal
• Read the labels of food items before consuming them for calorie-rich ingredients.
• Fresh food is always healthier than canned or processed foods
• Have regular, well balanced meals
• Include lots of fiber in your diet, such as fruits
• Drink LOTS of water. As a guide you must drink at least 8- 10 glasses of water in a day.
• Fast food and sugary drinks are your enemy – keep them at a distance
• Chew your food slowly – it will help you enjoy your food better