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Sunday, February 5, 2012

Streamline Your Weight Loss Habits

Your weight loss plan doesn't have to boggle your mind. Simple tactics can ease your learning curve.

For example, most of us have heard that using smaller plates or bowls will fool our eyes and stomachs into thinking we are eating a full meal. This may work for some people, but it definitely never worked for me. That full, small dish, never made me think I was getting a larger portion. If it works for you - great.

If not - what to do?

Arrange your food on the plates you've always used, keeping the food on the bottom of the plate and away from curved (or sloping), edge.

Your plate looks "sparse?" Garnish the curved edge with parsley or salad-type ingredients.

A second tactic is to read the food labels! Just about all labels tell you how much is in a portion. For example, a 14.5-ounce can of plain green beans will serve 3.5 portions.

Okay. That's good for canned and packaged food. What about meat?

Of course you could buy a food scale to weigh each portion, but an easier way is to buy your meat by the pound and divide it into four equal portions to get four, four-ounce servings. If you need six-ounce portions, just buy 1.8 pounds of meat and divide it into four equal portions.

A third tactic is to avoid distractions while eating. Distractors are things like watching television, reading, and using a computer. These kind of distractions cause eating episodes when you're not really hungry and can make it difficult to gauge the amount of food you consume.

You can eliminate or replace negative cues with more positive ones. Here are some examples:

Reduce the number of places you tend to eat (e.g., no more eating in the car or the family room).
Replace candy jars with sugarless or low fat candy and gum.
Get rid of the junk food or move all of it to an area that is not easily reached. Then replace that area with spices or containers. This will give you a conscious reminder to change mindless snacking habits.
Establish one designated eating-place at home (and work). Ideally, this location should be a dining table or kitchen, and should be free of distractions.
Eat your snacks in the designated eating-place.

And finally, since never eating out is more than likely out of the question, here are some simple tactics for managing "on-the-go" eating:

Order half-size portions if available. Better yet, order a child's plate.Split a meal with someone else.Skip the bread basket and the chips and salsa.If you feel extremely hungry, order vegetables or a side salad as an appetizer.Have half of your meal put in a to-go box before the food is served to the table.Choose broiled or baked main dishes.Ask that all dressings and condiments be put on the side. Use a fork to dip the salad into the dressing.Remain aware of how much you are eating throughout the meal.Put your fork down and sip water often to give yourself time to feel full.

You may be asking, "where is the best place to start with changing my habits?" You can examine your current habits and download a free ebook that outlines the best approach to changing habits at http://dawnsnewtwilight.com.
Dawn E. Thompson has taught and coached weight training for several years in international settings.

Article Source:http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Dawn_E_Thompson


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