Recently released reports show that 23 states have an increasing obesity rate over last year, and that trend has been happening for many years. If you go back to 1991, no state had an obesity rate above 20%, whereas in 2009, all states except Colorado were above 20%, and 5 states were above 30%. How can we reverse that trend. One problem may be that many diets promise quick weight loss
, providing a plan to lose pounds quickly, 10 pounds in two weeks, 30 pounds in a month, etc. But turning that into permanent weight loss tends to be a rather difficult thing to do. Instead of a quick fix diet, the real key to permanent weight loss is really not to diet at all, but to adopt a healthy way of eating and living. Here are some tips that will set you on that path to a healthier lifestyle, and hopefully start to reverse that trend of an ever fatter adult population in the US.
1.) Still cook the foods you love – just make them healthier.
To stick with a new diet for the long term, you’ll have to enjoy the foods that you eat. If you take foods that you already enjoy, make them healthier while keeping that same great taste, then you are more likely to stick with the diet. Make your recipes healthier by reducing the fat, calorie, and carbohydrate count. Some examples include substituting olive oil for butter or fattier oils, use cornstarch for thickening rather than flour or potatoes, and eliminate rice, enjoying your soup or stew without it.
2.) Portion control – weight loss is all about consuming fewer calories.
You must control how much you eat in order to lose weight. To control the portions you eat, use a smaller plate, and stay within the bounds of that plate for a given meal. Try using a salad plate rather than a dinner plate. Limit the amount of protein you eat at each meal to about 5 to 8 oz. For leaner proteins like fish, you can go up to the 8 oz, for fattier proteins like beef, stick closer to 5 oz.
3.) Limit the bad carbohydrates and bad fats that you consume.
Bad carbohydrates are those that rapidly increase the level of glucose in your blood, foods such as potatoes, rice, corn, bread and pasta are examples. Stick to fresh fruits and vegetables and occasionally sweet potatoes and brown rice as better carbohydrates. Bad fats are the saturated and trans fats found in baked goods, margarine, vegetable oils, and animal fats. Better fats would include olive oil, leaner cuts of meat, and avocadoes.
4.) Balance the amount of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you consume at each meal.
Stick to around 33% protein, 60% carbohydrates, and around 15% fat for each of your meals. Research has shown that your body responds best to this balance in your diet.
5.) Eat small meals throughout the day (about every 2.5 to 3 hours)
Eating throughout the day will boost your metabolism and keep you from getting hungry. By eating throughout the day your blood sugar levels will remain fairly constant, resulting in fewer hunger pains.
6.) Increase your level of Activity.
Notice I didn’t say exercise; some people are allergic to it. The important thing is to get moving, whether it is running, walking, gardening, mowing the lawn, or playing ball with your kids. Just get moving!
7.) It’s ok to lose weight slowly, actually preferable.
Your body will get used to the weight loss and your metabolism will adjust to it as you go. Resist the temptation of the hype over quick weight loss. Yes you can starve yourself and drop a quick 10 to 15 pounds, but if you’re after permanent weight loss, it’s better to take it slower.
8.) Give yourself a “day off” from your healthy diet once in a while.
Every few weeks it’s ok to take a day off from being healthy. If you’re at a barbecue with friends have a few beers and the baby back ribs
. You’re in it for the long haul, so a day off now and again won’t hurt you. It will actually give you a psychological boost and help to keep you on the right track. Just make sure you get right back to it the next day.
9.) Limit or eliminate your alcohol intake.
Your body will use the energy from the alcohol before it starts dipping into the calories from the food that you consumed. So basically it will prevent you from losing weight. While you are trying to lose weight, try to eliminate your alcohol intake, for exceptions see number 8. While you are just maintaining then a glass of wine or a low carb beer would be ok.
10.) Drink plenty of fluids, preferably water.
Your body needs fluids to properly function, especially while losing weight, so drink as often as you can. You should limit or eliminate carbonated beverages, even diet sodas. I also find that hot coffee or tea suppresses appetite for a while. In fact, often when you feel hungry you are just dehydrated, and drinking some water will help with your hunger.
For more information and for a step by step guide on achieving permanent weight loss go to www.creolediet.com .