Much of the way we eat; is out of habit. If we strive to become more mindful of what and how much we are eating, we can cut down significantly on the amount of sugar and fat in our diet.
You see, many times we add sugar and fats to our food completely out of habit. I’ve watched people salt their foods before they even taste it. The remarkable thing is that making some very small but practical changes to your eating habits can eliminate many hidden calories.
If you desire to lose weight, making some small changes in the way that you eat will bring you big results. I’ve outlined some healthy tips that will trick your mind and your tummy. You’ll drop pounds without even feeling like you are dieting.
1. Pour fat-free, soy-milk or rice-milk into your cereal instead of whole milk.
2. Always eat your meals from real plates, never out of a bag or frozen food container.
3. Skip the donuts or sweet rolls and have a fruit salad, bowl of melon, berries or banana with low-fat milk. Sprinkle with flaxseed for some healthy Omega-3 fatty acids.
4. Share a bagel with your husband, child or co-worker or wrap up the other half for another meal later on.
5. Use cooking spray when cooking eggs instead of oiling the pan.
6. Choose nonstick pans instead of oil, too.
7. Spice up your coffee with cinnamon or nutmeg instead of sugary syrup.
8. Substitute Canadian bacon for regular bacon or sausage.
9. Eat protein at every meal.
10. Make omelets healthier and lower in calories by substituting 4 egg whites for 2 whole eggs.
11. Omit or cut in half the butter you normally use on muffins and bread.
12. Add lots of veggies to your omelets and frittatas, like mushrooms, peppers, and broccoli, and add less cheese and meat.
13. Choose all fruit jam over sugary jelly.
14. Use a fat-free cream cheese as spread for bagels, toast and English muffins.
15. Change the perception of your portions by making them look bigger when you serve your breakfast small plates and glasses.
1. Add lettuce, tomato, onions and pickles to your hamburger or sandwich. This will help to add veggies to every meal and you can omit the cheese or use a half slice of low fat cheese instead.
2. Add zucchini, green peppers, onion and mushrooms to spaghetti sauce and leave out the meat. The veggies will make the sauce chunky and robust.
3. Choose fat-free mayonnaise and fat-free or Light Ranch dressing.
4. Have a grilled veggie sandwich in a pita instead of a meat sandwich.
5. Substitute regular butter for fat-free butter spray.
6. Make your own pizza and use less cheese.
7. Substitute fat-free sour cream in regular recipes.
8. Skim the fat from soups and stews.
9. Trim all fat from cuts of beef, pork and chicken.
10. Bake, broil or grill your meat rather than frying.
11. Order Pizza with chicken rather than pepperoni.
12. Select a homemade tuna fish (water packed variety) sandwich on regular bread over a hamburger and fries or large deli type sandwich.
13. Choose three to four ounce portions of meat for each meal.
14. Remove the skin before you eat your cooked chicken.
15. Top your salads with cut green onions instead of croutons.
1. Try to eat at the same time each day, or closest to it. Maintaining a regular schedule maintains your sugar levels and keeps you from overeating or becoming hungry between meals.
2. Add celery and onions to all soups to add volume and taste.
3. Eat an apple before meals to add vitamins, fiber and to help satisfy your appetite.
4. Drink water or unsweetened tea with your meals. Add a lemon slice and an orange slice instead of sugar.
5. Prepare your own salad dressing with 2 parts balsamic vinegar and one part extra virgin olive oil.
6. Reduce the amount of cheese in casseroles.
7. Serve vegetable appetizers as well as meat and cheese.
8. Omit or cut in half the butter you use to cook with.
9. Savor and enjoy your food. Eat slowly for proper digestion and to help you become satisfied.
10. Wait at least 10 minutes after eating before returning for second helpings.
11. Try a meatless meal whenever possible.
12. Reduce fat at every meal. Be mindful of the amount of fat that you use to cook with and use on your food.
13. Season vegetables with lemon instead of butter.
14. Eat whole grain bread rather than processed white bread.
15. Eat protein at every meal.
Try not to eat at least three hours prior to going to bed. This gives your body some time to digest your food before going off to sleep. Likewise, don’t eat a large meal prior to exercising, but eat a small amount of protein about an hour or so before you exercise. This will help you to burn more fat while you workout.
As often as possible, eat your meals from home. This allows you to control your portions and the ingredients in the foods that you are eating. However, just because you choose to eat a healthy diet does not mean that you cannot go out to eat.
When dining out, there are a large variety of healthy foods to choose from. More and more restaurants accommodate special dietary needs. Ask about putting your sauces on the side and inquire about the fats used in cooking. Many dining establishments have a Lighter Side menu that takes all the guesswork out of dieting when dining out. But when you want that special dish—go for it. But if the portion is large, consider taking half of it home and having it for tomorrow’s lunch or midday snack.
Eating a healthy diet that will help you achieve your ideal weight and size is a responsible decision and one that will pay off in big returns.
Tell us about a few of your tricks in the comment space below:
~ Karen Ficarelli
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