Not many of us are truly happy about our weight. Either we don’t like the way we look in the mirror or else we have come to realize that our weight is risking our health. Whatever the reason for trying, getting back to the ideal weight can be a struggle. Some of the diets on offer can be downright dangerous. And there is a terrible tendency for weight to creep back up as soon as the diet is over. There must be a better way, and nutritionists tell us that there is.
A Lifestyle Choice
The main reason why people go back to eating what they used to, after a diet has done its work, is simple: they get hungry. While we are dieting, we have the incentive of a target to reach, and the knowledge that the sacrifice is relatively short-term. This helps us to defy the hunger. When we finish the diet, the hunger is still there, but the prospect now is of living with it forever to stay where we are—not nearly such an attractive incentive.
There are situations where people are right to consider medical intervention to deal with their weight and eating problems, but not before they have really tried the alternatives to lipo that are free and natural.
Eating Less by Eating More
What we need are foods that help us to control our hunger without actually piling on the pounds. These will be foods that get us through to the next mealtime without feeling an irresistible urge to snack and without diving into that next meal like ravenous lions.
It means giving up some of the things we like, though not necessarily all the time. We can still have the special treats, just not whenever we feel like it. Give your superego carte blanche to say ‘No!’ when you reach for that cookie.
If you are going to give your body a fighting chance of long-term weight loss, you need to keep a close eye on the balance of foods that you eat. Three of the building blocks of nutrition are your allies in keeping hunger at bay until it is time to eat properly.
The Big Three
Protein. We are well adapted by nature to eat protein, and it is a good appetite suppressor. It takes a long time to digest, and our bodies have to work hard digesting it so that a lot of the calories it contains get used up immediately in the process of eating it. Studies have shown that diets which are exclusively protein are effective (if not particularly healthy) because people following them simply eat less food.
Fat. Like protein, fat is high energy food, which is why a lot of diets have tended to avoid it. But it is an essential part of a healthy diet. Again it takes a lot of digesting, so it releases its energy over a slower period, keeping blood sugar levels up and not triggering the ‘must eat now’ reflex. It is important to go for the right sort of fat—fatty fish, nuts, seeds, olive oil, and avocados are all particularly good, while dairy fats and fatty meats should be avoided.
Fiber. Fiber is essential for the proper working of our guts. It does not break down much in the digestion process so provides the physical sensation of fullness without adding many calories. Fresh vegetables, especially leafy ones, are an excellent source of fiber, as are fruit and whole grains. Eating a sufficient quantity of these, along with beans and legumes as part of your protein complement, will give you an adequate supply of carbohydrates at the same time.
If you want to make it a big four, you can add water, which has no calories at all, yet is quite capable of filling you up. It doesn’t take long to pass through the system, but including a couple of glasses at a mealtime can make a significant difference to how much you want to eat, and it is easy to grab a glass whenever you feel like a snack during the day.
The Future Calls
People say that nothing that is worth achieving comes easily, and a healthy future is definitely something that is worth achieving. Some rare people are capable of eating and living healthily on willpower alone, and a lucky few find it just comes naturally. For most people an element of self-discipline is needed, but nothing that is beyond the bounds of possibility when your own metabolism is on your side.
Brooke Francis has been on and off diets since she was 19. Now in her 30’s she has finally cracked the food/weight issue and is managing to maintain a steady weight without depriving herself. She shares her food tips with others online.