The pendulum has swung in many directions regarding diet, nutrition, and weight loss over the decades.
Having been raised by a mother who was an early pioneer in Overeaters Anonymous, I’ve seen it all: Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Adkins, HCG, The Zone, Sugar Busters, Paleo, low-fat, low-calorie, diet pills, laxatives, eating disorders, and, now, the ever-popular Keto Diet.
So, rather than singling out one program over another, I prefer to pinpoint the commonalities of these programs that will help ensure your success in losing weight and maintaining a healthy life.
Whichever path you choose nutritionally — be it low-fat, paleo, Keto, vegan, or sports nutrition — these common threads apply to weight loss and can help speed up your desired results.
- Calories Matter. We all have a daily caloric requirement. If you eat just slightly under it you will lose weight. If you eat over it, you will not.
- Protein Matters. Have protein at every meal.
- Quality of Food Matters. The quality of your food is critical for great results. Farm-raised, hormone- and antibiotic-free, organic, fresh, etc.
- Avoid Sugar. Sugar, honestly, is like poison. It can lead to increased inflammation, diabetes, high triglycerides, and rapid weight gain.
- Avoid Processed Foods. Bread, cereals, pasta, lunch meats, packaged cakes and cookies, and candies will all sabotage your good intentions.
- Eat 3-5 meals. Under-eating leads to over-eating, so it’s best to spread your meals out. Eat between 3-5 meals per day.
- Prep Your Own Food. Become a food carrier. Having your own food available at all times will maximize your chances of success and reduce poor food choices.
- Bring Food With You. See step above. Basically, never allow yourself to go hungry as a result of not having food with you.
- Don’t Snack. Easy said… not so easy to do. But, to maintain a healthy weight, it is a must.
- Reduce, or Just Do Not Consume, Alcohol. Alcohol has little to no value or nutritional benefit. It’s all empty calories.
- Go to bed slightly hungry. Late-night eating is a killer to your overall efforts!
- Drink lots of water.
Many programs can work for you and create value when it comes to weight loss. Always remember it’s not about perfection, it’s about progress. The longer you go without a cheat meal, the better results you will achieve.
When making a wrong food choice, allow the calories to be worthwhile. After the meal, get back on track with your plan, immediately.
The right program for you should bring you happiness, health, and results. It should enable you to do all the other things you enjoy in life.