Healthier habits may promote long-term weight loss
By Christie Mayer
Aug. 22, 2017 at 4:06 p.m.
People are always asking about weight loss - wanting a quick fix. I hear of so many fad diets and often wonder why someone would want to make it much harder than it needs to be.
Weight loss and maintenance (to me) seems to be common sense. Eat less and exercise more. I can't imagine cutting any one food out of my diet to achieve weight loss. It seems so much simpler to enjoy the food I love rather than omit it and miss it. While eating less and exercising more may be difficult for some, I find that having a routine keeps me on task.
Some tips to help get you on track with a healthy eating plan are:
Don't buy junk food: It's important to keep your pantry and refrigerator clear of tempting foods. Shop the outside aisles and shop alone. Shopping with family members may result in buying things you don't need or don't fit your meal plan. Never shop while hungry. I did this once and ended up donating a bunch of processed food that I never should have bought in the first place.
Food prep each week: I hear people say their produce goes bad too fast. Try to wash and cut up your fruit and vegetables right away so that it's easy to prepare. This should result in less waste and promote healthier meals throughout the week.
Limit going out to eat to special occasions: No matter what you order, it's going to have more calories, fat and sodium than foods you prepare at home. You may also be tempted to order something that you wouldn't normally prepare at home because it's not healthy.
Avoid the break room: Pack your lunch and try to avoid looking at what's in the break room. Too often, there's cake or other foods that may ruin your day. If you eat that donut, get back on track with your next meal.
Feed your kids healthier foods: Use your kids as motivation. The healthier you feed them, the healthier you will eat. Setting good examples for them is important. If you eat the vegetables, they will learn by your example.
Fill up on vegetables: If you've food prepped each week, you shouldn't have a barrier to having vegetables with each lunch and supper. Whether it be a salad that you throw together or vegetables that you steam, saute or grill. Filling half your plate with vegetables is a sure way to fill up on something healthier.
As always, drink water. Drink water with all meals and between meals to increase your feeling of fullness.
Weight loss doesn't require a strict eating plan. Cutting back on what you're currently eating should help with weight loss. It may take longer than following a strict fad diet, which ultimately leads to weight re-gain, but it can illicit healthier habits that can promote long-term weight loss.
Christie Mayer is a licensed renal dietitian with Davita Dialysis Center of Victoria.