Taking time to eat in a healthy and consistent way allows you to gradually melt pounds away without harming your body with too much or too little of particular foods or ingredients.
Here are a few tips to make your patience pay off with lasting results.
Know What You’re Eating
Always, always, always take the time to read food labels. A majority of prepared foods are loaded with unnecessary and unhealthy ingredients that add poundage while providing no nutritional benefit. Chief among these is high fructose corn syrup. It is an intense form of converted glucose that sweetens foods and can cause adverse side effects, especially when consumed in large quantities. When I started reading food labels I was shocked by how prevalent this additive is in the foods we buy.
Take Time to Prepare Clean Foods
The best way to avoid highly caloric and unwanted ingredients is to buy “clean” foods that don’t contain additives. Make your own marinades and use fresh herbs and spices to flavor food. Keep the fat content of your meats low, and eliminate butter with these healthier cooking ingredients.
Listen to Grandma
My grandmother used to remind my family and me to chew our food carefully. Slowing down the chewing process gives your brain time to register what your stomach has already taken in. Try to place a forkful of food into your mouth and then set the fork down. Chew and swallow that small portion before picking up your utensil to fill it again. You’ll find you eat much less by putting on the brakes. And if you can do it, set your silverware down when you’ve eaten half of your meal. Wait five minutes before eating more. You may find you are full enough and don’t need to eat the food remaining on your plate. This technique works especially well in restaurants where portions tend to be large and can provide you with tomorrow’s lunch or dinner.
Postpone Immediate Gratification
Eat a few mouthfuls of vegetables before you touch your bread or pasta. Filling up on complex carbs and proteins will cut down on your intake of simple carbs, which have little nutritional value. I like to eat a crunchy green salad as a first course. It satisfies my hunger and makes it easier to eat slowly.
Commit to the Long Haul
Drastic changes in weight can harm your body. The healthiest way to lose weight, and also the best way to keep it off, is to take your time. Don’t starve yourself! If you do your body will suffer cravings and quickly pack the pounds back on. Instead, change your eating habits to reduce your fat intake, eat more complex carbs, eat clean foods, and eliminate snacking. Allow yourself months, rather than days or weeks, to lose weight. By reducing gradually, your body will adjust to your downsizing as you go, and won’t fight to return you to your starting size.
Take your time when taking off weight for a healthy and permanent reduction.
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