Have you ever felt defeated in your weight loss efforts? Many people get so caught up by the scale! Don’t let the scale determine your success! I always tell my patients to not weigh themselves every day. Once a week is plenty to help keep you accountable and on track. Write it down to help track your progress. Treat yourself once you have hit your 5 lb weight loss mark (go to a movie, or the spa) and then keep shedding the pounds!
Here is a checklist of things to focus on daily on your weight loss journey:
Don’t go longer than 3-4 hours without eating (Start with breakfast, no longer than 1-2 hours after waking up)
Have protein at each meal and snack (20-30 grams protein at meal times, 7-10 grams for snacks)
Drink your water (Consume at least 64 oz water - add lemon, lime, or sliced cucumbers to flavor)
Commit to an exercise program (Exercise most days of the week. Include cardio, weight training, and stretching)
Stay away from high calorie drinks, condiments, and creamers
Limit your sweets (Sweets may taste good but they are packed with empty calories. Try popping in a piece of gum or have a sugar-free popsicle to curb your craving)
JOURNAL. Write down everything that goes into your mouth. A journal is a great accountability partner. My favorite is www.myfitnesspal.com. Myfitnesspal also has an app for any smart phone.
JOURNALING is the magic pill of weight loss!!
Remember consistency is key! If you commit to these 7 things and do them daily you WILL reach your goals!
Overeating can occur if you have gone to long during the day (over 3- 4 hours) without eating!
Finding an appropriate snack during the day can be a challenge!
The goal of a snack is to help keep you satisfied until your next meal and also to help control hunger levels thus preventing overeating at meals. A 100 calorie snack of Oreos is a lot different from a 100 calorie snack of string cheese with 1/2 an apple. When picking your snacks make sure that they include protein and fiber to help keep you satisfied until your next meal.
First look at the serving size
Then take a look at the calories( A snack should typically be between 150-250 calories depending on your calorie allowance for the day)
Next look for protein(Reach for at least 8-15 grams of protein at snack time)
Next look for fiber(Aim for snacks with at least 3g of fiber per serving. Each day you should get 25-35 grams of fiber)
NOTE: The closer you can get your carbohydrate (CHO) to protein (PRO) grams ratio at 2:1 the better. If protein grams are higher than carb grams that is fine, but if carbs are more than 2x than protein beware. When a food is high in carbs and there is not any protein or fiber to offset the high carbs your blood sugars will increase rapidly giving you energy for a little while but then hunger will set in. Protein and fiber help level out your blood sugars and keep you full longer!
Here are some other snack ideas
6oz Greek yogurt
1 string cheese and 1/2 apple
1/2 apple with 5 walnuts
1/2 cup 1% cottage cheese with 1/2 cup melon
1 oz nuts (small handful)
slices of carrot,celery, or red and yellow pepper with 4 Tbsp. hummus
3oz tuna served with tomato and drizzled with lemon juice
1/2 cup boiled edamame
6 tortilla chips topped with 1/4 cup vegetarian refried beans and salsa
Beef jerky (add a pc. of fruit or veggies for fiber)
When is the last time you read the back of your ketchup or BBQ sauce bottles? Or how about the labels of the flavored waters and sports drinks that taste so good? Often times these foods that seem harmless are full of sugar, fat, salt, preservatives and unwanted calories! Here are some ways to add flavor to your foods and drinks without all the extra calories!
Add flavor to your water by adding slices of
limes, lemons, or cucumber
natural tea packets- get creative and mix two flavors like peach and raspberry
Add flavor to your favorite foods using natural ingredients/low calorie options such as:
Stewed tomatoes (Mexican, Italian, etc…)
Mrs. Dash seasonings (over 13 varieties)
Fresh herbs- basil, cilantro, and rosemary are my favorites
Low calorie condiments:
Mustard (try spicy mustard for an extra zing) – Add to tuna fish instead of high calorie mayo.
Plain yogurt- Add to tuna instead of mayo or top a potato with yogurt instead of butter and sour cream
Light Italian dressing- makes a great marinade
Salsa- top potatoes with salsa instead of high calorie butter and sour cream or add on top or chicken instead of using BBQ sauce
What are some of your favorite ways to add flavor and variety when cooking?
So often in our busy lives we buy the already seasoned or flavored varieties of our favorite foods. Typically with convenience foods come a lot of unnecessary fat, sugar, and salt! By having some of the above ingredients on hand you are able to get creative in the kitchen and make your very own homemade nutritious foods while saving money and doing something good for your body!