It can be so frustrating when you’re eating healthy and still can’t lose weight! Especially knowing that obesity is one of the highest risk factors for cancer, heart disease and diabetes. Achieving and maintaining optimal weight can be much easier if we focus on mastering a few new behaviors at a time. After all, we learn through repetition!
Watch your portions! Have you adopted a healthier way of eating, but are still having trouble losing weight? Chances are your daily portions are too big. Begin with serving your meals on a lunch or dessert plate, about 9 inches in diameter. Dinner plates vary in size and are not meant to be the size of a small buffet. A smaller plate will help to keep your portions in check. Fill ½ of your plate with fruits or vegetables, ¼ with protein (4-6oz) and ¼ with whole grains. If you choose not to eat grains, fill that portion of your plate with more vegetables. Keep in mind that corn and potatoes are vegetables, but are high in starch and should count as a whole grain.
Pace yourself! Another problem is that we are often distracted at mealtime and eat too fast. It takes about 20 minutes for your brain to register that your stomach is full. Inhaling food while checking email, scrolling through Facebook, or watching television is not good for your digestive system or for your waistline. Be mindful at mealtime and chew your food until it’s liquefied. Before going back for seconds, allow your meal to digest and set a timer for 20 minutes. Start clearing the table, prepare lunch for the next day, take a leisurely stroll or do something to distract yourself from piling another helping onto your plate. Chances are you’ll feel satisfied and be able to enjoy your leftovers for lunch the next day.
Prepare for sleep! According to a study at Columbia University, your body’s metabolism begins to slow down and your body temperature lowers in the evening to get you ready for sleep. Eating before bedtime can interrupt sleep patterns and cause digestive problems, leaving you feeling tired when you wake up, and causing you to overeat throughout the day to boost your energy. To help maximize your best sleep, avoid eating within 2 to 3 hours before bedtime.
If you want to achieve that optimal weight, implement these 3 easy behaviors and see if you can get that scale moving in the right direction. Be patient with yourself, and remember small steps over time yield big results.
Author: Suzanne Foglio, Holistic Health Coach and founder of Vibrant Life After Cancer