According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), two thirds of American adults are overweight and one third qualifies as obese. With statistics like these, it is easy to understand why the most popular New Year’s Resolution set each year is to lose weight. If you are among these resolution setters, give yourself the best chance at success with these tips that will start your weight loss resolution off right.
Tip #1 – Find Your Balance
Unfortunately, there is no quick fix for weight loss and the answer always comes down to balancing what you put in your mouth with what you do with your feet. Forget the fad diets that promise quick results and stick to the tried and true method for losing and maintaining weight. Start by eating a balanced diet that includes healthy options from all the food groups. You can use the tools and information provided at ChooseMyPlate.gov to learn how to balance your diet.
Tip #2 – Don’t Underestimate How Much You Eat
One of the most common reasons dieters struggle to lose weight is that they think they are taking in fewer calories than they are actually eating and drinking. Make sure you don’t hit this roadblock by starting out on the right foot. Spend a week or two tracking everything you eat using a calorie counter or food journal like the Super Tracker provided by the USDA to keep track of what you eat. This will provide you with a factual starting point and ensure you aren’t sabotaging yourself unknowingly.
Tip #3 – Pair Up
Everything is better with a buddy and losing weight is no exception. A weight loss buddy can help keep you excited and committed to achieving your goals and provide support and encouragement when you feel unmotivated. Surrounding yourself with other people who are committed to living healthy lifestyles also makes it easier to remain committed to living healthier.
Tip #4 – Picture Yourself Healthy
Visualization is a powerful tool and experts agree that picturing yourself at your goal weight and envisioning how that will change your life can help keep you motivated.
Tip #5 – Stop Looking for Shortcuts
There is no magic pill and no quick fix for losing weight. It takes time, patience, and perseverance to change what you eat, how you eat, and how active you are. Don’t set yourself up for disappointment by setting unrealistic goals. Commit to making these changes for the long term and give yourself permission to take the time you need to get to your goal in a healthy, sustainable way.
Tip #6 – Make Shopping into Something Special
Rather than rushing through the supermarket in an effort to get your grocery shopping crossed off of your to do list, make an appointment with yourself to go on a food shopping field trip. Try out the farmer’s market or visit a farm stand. Take time to search for healthy recipes you are excited about. Look for new foods to try and ways to make old favorites more weight loss friendly.