It is now the year 2021. Many of us have survived the nightmare of 2020. There will no doubt be residual trauma from the many disasters, tragedies and civil unrest that we endured
Have you started working on your New Year’s resolutions yet? Did your resolutions involve dieting and losing weight? Let's change the term from 'resolutions' to 'new habits'
Many people promise themselves to lead a healthier life in the new year, but then they quit after about two weeks. Why do you think that is?
Mainly, it has to do with setting high standards for themselves. They get so overwhelmed with the primary goal of “losing weight” that they quit if they don’t see results quickly. That is why you should set smaller resolutions for yourself that you can accomplish on a monthly basis.
To get started on this new path for losing weight, follow these monthly resolutions for one year and see how much they make a difference to your weight loss goals and overall health.
1) Increase Protein Intake
Most nutritionists and dieticians will recommend that people consume more protein in order to lose weight. Protein consumption can reduce your hunger quickly so that you don’t overeat and consume too many carbohydrates and fats. Protein also stimulates the health and strength of your bones, nails, hair, skin and muscle mass.
Make sure you consume healthier protein-rich foods like lentils, beans, egg whites, natural peanut butter, or Greek yogurt. Stay away from steak and hamburgers.
2) Increase Plant-based Food Intake
Vegetables and virtually all plant-based foods are the healthiest foods you can eat. They can help you lower your chance of developing Type 2 Diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and cancer. You can also eat fruits as well.
Find ways to replace unhealthy ingredients with healthy ingredients. Perhaps you can try a black bean burger instead of a hamburger. Just think about the ingredients and look for creative ways to turn them into delicious substitute meals.
3) Eat Salad or Soup Appetizers
If you were to eat a healthy appetizer before a meal, then you wouldn’t feel the need to eat a big meal. Consuming something as simple as salad or soup will make it easier to cut down the portions of your meals. Salad and soap have fewer calories, no fat, high fiber, and high amounts of essential vitamins and minerals.
4) Increase Fiber Intake
Fiber is just as important as protein, but for different reasons. Although fiber and protein can both make you feel full a lot faster, fiber supports the health of your digestive system and immune system. Foods like legumes, whole wheat bread, beans, chia seeds, fruits, and vegetables are all rich in fiber.
5) Drink Plenty of Water
If you consume at least 8 glasses of water per day, it will hydrate your body and make you feel less hungry. It’ll also cut down your feelings of dizziness and fatigue, which are clear symptoms of dehydration. The human body cannot function without water anyway, so you must consume it for better health.
6) Try Out New Food Dishes
There are plenty of healthy recipe cookbooks available. If you want to make healthy eating more interesting and fun, try preparing some of the original recipes in these books.
For example, there are recipes for spaghetti squash or black bean spaghetti that are delicious and totally healthy. You’ll also find a creative way of replacing traditional bacon strips with carrot “bacon” strips.
7) Eliminate Sugars
Added sugars should always be avoided. They will not only ruin your internal health, but they’ll pack on extra weight around your waist, gut, and buttocks. Any canned or processed foods or beverages are bound to have added sugars in them. You can tell by simply looking at the nutritional chart of the food product. Underneath the row for “Sugars,” you’ll see another row for “Added Sugars.” You’ll want that row to state “0 grams.”
If you want to consume something sweet, then simply consume naturally sweet foods like fruits or stevia sweetener.
8) Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is a weight-loss method where you refrain from eating for a period of 12 to 21 hours per day. That means you would eat all your food within a 3 to 12-hour period each day. This will stop you from having too many snacks and adding too many calories throughout the day.
9) Track Your Food Intake
If you feel tempted to eat bad foods throughout the day or night, then you might benefit from tracking your healthy food intake. Some people create food journals where they write down everything that they eat each day. They may even take pictures of the food to remind them of what healthy food looks like.
Keep this journal with you whenever you’re out traveling or around areas where you might be tempted to eat badly.
10) Eliminate Distractions
Junk food is advertised to us everywhere. We see it on our mobile phones, laptops, and televisions. It helps to turn these devices off so that you’re not distracted by the images of delicious junk food. Otherwise, you could easily end up having a relapse by eating junk again.
11) Separate Healthy and Unhealthy Foods
Your home should only be filled with healthy foods. If you live with someone who likes to eat unhealthily, then create separate rows in the refrigerator and pantry for healthy foods and unhealthy foods. Don’t mix the foods together on the same rows.
12) Request Assistance
Having a positive influence around you is critical. You need family members and friends in your inner circle who support your weight loss journey for the new year. That doesn’t mean they need to be on the same journey with you, but they at least have to be supportive of your journey and not try to tempt you back into your older unhealthy ways.
If you struggle with this, then request the services of a nutritionist or dietician who can give you the proper encouragement you need to stay on the right path. If you’re already overweight or obese, then seek out an Overeaters Anonymous meeting and see if that helps. You’ll realize very quickly how many other people share the same problem with losing weight as you do.