Obesity and weight loss have top trending topics for years now, as the obesity rate balloon ever larger. There are many competing dieting plans available, but successful weight loss plans contains several key ingredients: healthy fat burning, portion control, choice, behavioral change and self-management. Let’s look at how these key components work in busting obesity.
Successful weight loss demands portion control. I have lost 100 pounds with portion control and calorie counting. I have always known quite a bit about nutrition, but even I was surprised at how large the portions were that I was eating compared to what portion sizes should be. I was consuming many more calories than the recommended amount to maintain healthy weight. I was not even binging. I just wasn’t aware many calories were in the portion sizes that I was consuming nor what was a healthy portion size. When I started reading nutrition labels and practicing portion control based on recommended portion size, weight loss got exponentially easier. Calorie counting showed where calorie leaks were causing weight gain and how to stop them.
Successful weight loss requires choice. Diets that don’t allow for choice, preference and adaptability do not lead to successful weight loss. Healthy dieting doesn’t prohibit foods. It teaches helps you make changes unhealthy eating habits. For example, if you routinely consume alcohol or soda, it’s better to follow a diet that allows those and teaches calorie counting to budget those into your overall meal plan. A successful weight loss plan should adapt to you, not you to the diet.
Busting obesity means behavior changes. Having said that healthy dieting adapts to you, not you to it, some adapting is necessary on your part. People get fat from unhealthy behavior so healthy dieting means changing that behavior. But still, it’s about choice–weight loss programs work best when they present nutrition facts, teach the dieter how to adjust eating patterns and leave the work to the dieter. Because losing weight is as much about changing unhealthy habits as it is about eating less. Any diet that doesn’t factor in lifestyle change and just relies on Draconian crash dieting will fail. Dieters must rethink how to eat (eat slowly, chew carefully). They must learn when to eat and when not to (avoid eating a large meal before bed for example). Healthy dieting teaches how much to eat (calorie counting, portion control). They need to learn where to eat and where to avoid eating (eating homemade vs processed or restaurant food). Behavior changes include avoiding some activities and staring to do more of others. Avoid eating in while watching television so you don’t mindlessly snack or binge. Getting weight off is relatively easy. Keeping it off requires learning new, healthier eating strategies and incorporating them into your life. It also requires making behavior changes that can be maintained within your lifestyle.
Breaking obesity includes self-management: Any good weight loss plan must help the dieter to make healthy choices for herself. Your best friend in weight loss are nutrition data facts sheets on food labels. These handy little guides help you to know how many calories, fat, protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals, sodium and sugar in foods. Nutrition data lists suggested serving sizes. Use this information to plan healthy dieting menus. Using food journals, calorie counting tools and nutrition charts to manage eating habits. Self-managed diets help you control food instead of letting it control you.