Dieting All About Dedication, Moderation

By Laura Oliver 

When you’re striving to attain a healthier weight, which diet is best for you? What should you avoid? How many calories should you consume? Sometimes people focus too much on restriction of food and calories and not enough on balance. When in doubt, go back to the basics of a portion-controlled meal plan.

Focus on what you can have. Get excited about healthful eating. Whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean meats and low fat dairy do the body good. They give you stable energy and provide you with essential nutrients that help strengthen your muscles and bones.

Keep your weaknesses in check. You do not have to write down everything you eat every day, but keep track of your weaknesses. If you struggle with desserts, then set a goal and allow yourself to have a realistic number of desserts per week. Then, stick to it.

Be conscious of what goes into your mouth. No more mindless eating. Eat at a time when there are not any distractions around you, so you can focus on the food on your plate. If craving chips or cookies, allow yourself to have one serving. Set yourself up for success and avoid eating out of the bag or container.

Reward yourself. If you achieve a goal, set aside time for yourself to do an activity you have wanted to do, such as read a magazine, take a bath or see the latest movie. Try not to reward yourself with food; this can fuel bad habits.

Losing weight and maintaining it require dedication and willpower. Many times, accountability plays an important role in successful weight loss. For more guidance on appropriate foods and individualized meal plans, contact the Rush Nutrition and Wellness Center at (312) 942-DIET to meet with a registered dietitian, who can help on your journey toward better health.

Laura Oliver is an MS clinical nutrition candidate and dietetic intern at Rush University Medical Center.

2 thoughts on “Dieting All About Dedication, Moderation

  1. Great advice. I would say though that you should be writing down everything that you eat – it’s the only way to keep yourself honest. Also, research has shown that when women exercise, we tend to allow ourselves to eat more because we tell ourselves, I can have a bit more because I have exercised. we do it subconsciously. If you track your exercise and eating as you do with Weight Watchers, you can’t fool yourself because it is there in black an white!

    I know several people who still track every single day after they get to their goal weight, but I am not that diligent nor would I want to live like that. However, if I find the weight starting to find its way back, I will start writing everything down again to get me back on track..

  2. I agree–there are some people that need to write everything down. It’s insteresting, though, because it turns some clients away when I suggest to write everything down, as it may bring up negative emotionals about themselves and/or their bodies. I want to set them up for success, and for many, writing everything down isn’t realisitc. I think the diligence comes with time.

    Also, I agree with your statement about exercising and eating more. I think part of that is biological, however we all do it to some extent. Keeping a food log would definitely be a good way to keep that in check!

    Thanks for your comment! Very intriguing

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