If your current health goal is to get to a healthier weight, we want to be a part of your health journey and support your goals. Our Registered Dietitians give their advice on how to successfully make lifestyle changes to lose the weight and keep it off for good!
Weight Loss Tip #1
Don’t go on a diet. There are thousands of diets out there and very few people find long-term success with them. Instead, think about making positive lifestyle modifications to your nutrition plan. You don’t have to say goodbye to your favorite foods forever, but you will need to adjust your nutrition.
Weight Loss Tip #2
Look more closely at what you eat, how you eat, and when you eat. You can use a simple rule of thumb when preparing meals or picking meals when eating out. Divide your plate in half. One half of your plate should be dedicated to greens and vegetables. That can be a salad or fresh veggies. The other half of your plate is divided in half again. A fourth of your plate then is for lean proteins like chicken or fish, and the other quarter is for complex carbohydrates like whole grain pasta, a small sweet potato, or other grains like quinoa or brown rice.
Looking at when and how you eat is important too. Instead of eating the standard three meals – breakfast, lunch and dinner – you can schedule your meals every 3-4 hours. You can have 3 small meals and 2-3 snacks a day. This meal pattern ensures that you never get too hungry and eat more than your body really needs. It also keeps your blood sugar more constant.
When you eat, avoid multi-tasking. There are a lot of benefits to eating at a table during a dedicated meal time, especially for families. If you typically eat on your couch in front of the TV, or even at the table but while reading or playing on your phone, make it a goal to stop. You can make that goal to have one meal a day at a table with no distractions or a few days a week with the aim to make all meals distraction-free eventually.
Weight Loss Tip #3
Incorporate exercise into your daily routine. A lot of people who are trying to lose weight focus on their nutrition, which is an important part. But another important component to weight loss and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is exercise.
But exercise does not have to be a daunting task! First, determine your level of physical fitness and find a good exercise plan for that level. You don’t have to pick up running or go into a strict weights routine to include exercise every day. Pick a small goal that is realistic for you. If a realistic goal for you is less than five minutes of walking, that is OK. Start with a small goal and build your way up to a bigger goal.
Weight Loss Tip #4
Don’t drink your calories. A lot of calories like to disguise themselves in common drinks. But beverages like sports drinks, pop, sweet teas, and coffee drinks with syrups and sugars all have a lot of calories. The good thing is these drinks are easy to cut out. Replace sweet teas with green or unsweetened versions. Try black coffee instead of sugary lattes and other high-calorie drinks and swap pop for water. You can also add a wedge of lemon, lime, cucumber or other fruits or veggies to change the flavor when you first switch to water.
Weight Loss Tip #5
Eat breakfast. Starting your day with a healthy breakfast is one of the best things that you can do. It can be hard for people unaccustomed to eating first thing in the day to add in breakfast, but it is an important change. Start with a small breakfast as your body adapts and begins to expect that metabolism boost first thing.
For a healthy breakfast, you want to have a protein, whole grain carbohydrate, and a low-fat dairy or fruit. Try a few pieces of turkey bacon or a nut butter with a small bowl of steel-cut oats topped with strawberries and black coffee. You’re off to a good start already!
You are not alone on your weight loss journey. Talk to your primary care doctor about your weight loss health goals and before you start a new physical exercise routine. If you are looking for a primary care doctor, we can give you advice on how to find a new PCP. Your health journey is important and we are here each step of the way.