I have a hard time planning meals and making a shopping list because what I've planned for may turn out to be too expensive, or I unexpectedly find another (healthy!) option that sounds better than what I planned. However, mindless wandering ends in disaster! Instead, I let myself wander the perimeter of the store, where even impulse buys will be healthy, but make a specific list for items I need from the center aisles. It gives my more freedom when I shop, but still keeps me from buying cookies!!
I love the fizzy feel of soda pop, but didn't like the calories and nasty ingredients. I was also trying to lower my sodium. I switched to seltzer water, which I can flavor with real fruit juice like lemon and lime. This has saved me money, improved my health, and I even like the taste of it quite a bit more!
I found it hard to drink big glasses of water each day and only got through 2 1/2 the first day. The next day I remember a friend tell me she used small 8 oz glass and could drink all eight. I tried it and it work!!
I used to think that Aldi's was only full of super processed junk food. However, I have found my favorite things there like hummus, light cheese sticks, produce, low sodium/sugar canned fruit and soups. While there are certainly temptations if you are looking to lose weight and save money Aldi's can't be beat!
It happens to us all. A craving hits. You can't seem to stop yourself from eating whatever unhealthy food you think you "need". My solution? Cough drops. Pop a menthol cough drop in your mouth. Trust me when I say NOTHING tastes good following a cough drop. I use this at parties as well. I'll eat the healthiest things I can put on my plate and when I'm done, pop in a cough drop. It usually does the trick. I hope it works for you as well.
Simply by reading labels you can lower the calories you eat. It may be easy to eat a cookie, "cuz its only one, it can't be that bad"....but if you read the label and see that its 400 cal...I promise, it won't taste as sweet.
This is a great trick to use during the holidays!
If you struggle with after-dinner binge eating, which sabotages the great work you do at healthfully eating during the day, try eating a small amount of protein in the late afternoon. My secret: I eat a hard boiled egg or have a small amount of greek yogurt before I leave the office at the end of the day. This keeps me from nibbling during dinner prep, and keeps me fuller overall, which helps me control late night snacking.
In the wintertime, I cook a quiche every Sunday night to last me through the work week. It's quick and easy and you can create different combinations so you don't get bored! It really helps me not skip breakfast, or even worse, over-eat and feel sluggish the rest of the morning.
In the beginning tracking on SP taught me how to eat the right amount of calories by making choices of what to eat. Later I learned to also keep in ranges (all at the same time) for protein, carbs, fat, and fiber. Once I found how to eat and get proper nutrition, I was not hungry and feeling deprived, then everything else fell into line.
When going out with friends/family to a restaurant (as we all have those get togethers with family members that don't understand your goals) order a side salad for your appetizer with a vinegar or vinagrette dressing. Then a broth based soup for dinner. You'll stay within your calories & will be satisfied in the end. Also, I order lemon in my water. The lemon juice will help you to feel full as well. You won't feel like you need to have desert either.
Many times my wife and I I catch ourselves just munching on something without thinking about it. You're not a horrible person for having a treat, or something that is "off plan", but make it a conscious decision and understand the consequences!
1) Drink a glass of spring water first thing when you wake up and before you eat any meals or snacks.
Sometimes spending a little extra money on a bag of apple slices or a kit with hummus and pretzels is okay. If these smaller portion sizes (or convenient yet healthy foods) allow me to stay on track, it's worth it! Plus, it can actually save me money because they don't end up in the trash!
I love Greek yogurt but can't get used to eating the plain variety. Recently while in the Amish Country in Pennsylvania I bought something called pumpkin butter (it doesn't contain butter -- it's more like a pumpkin pie filling) I add a tablespoon of this to my plain Greek yogurt and it's delicious. And the calorie count is no higher than if I were to eat the vanilla flavor. Sometimes I add a sprinkle of cinnamon.
I'm sure others have said this, but tracking your food is key to staying on track. I ate a meal out of my house for the first time in about 2 weeks. It was a sit down restaurant and I started thinking of excuses to have a burger and fries(and almost ordered a sprite) for almost 1100 calories(not even including soda)... Once I thought about having to log that in, I found something a lot healthier for only 550 calories and it came with vegetables!
If you're like me and not supposed to eat the egg yolk (but love eggs), use a turkey baster. Take the rubber portion off, squeeze it, hold it over the yolk, and then stop squeezing. The suction will force the yolk (and only the yolk) into the handle. Voilà! Egg whites! :)
We used to be a family that for dinner we had a main course of meat, a veggie, and a carb side dish. Since beginning this I have discovered if I can cut back on my carb side dish and filling it up with fresh veggies, I feel so much better! I consume fewer calories, I get the vitamins and minerals that my body needs, and I feel healthier and get sick less!
When I have food cravings I take a moment to think through the process of eating it right through to how I'll feel afterwards, e.g.:
I shop the outer isles of the grocery store and stay away from pre-packaged foods. If it has more than a few ingredients, I stay away. This includes bread too! I don't even want it in my house. The healthier foods are the whole foods and nothing that comes pre-packaged as a meal. This includes those "diet frozen dinners", too! You know the ones. Those processed foods have so much sodium! So who the heck wants to retain water? Grill your own veggies and protein and enjoy non-processed food!
Be sure to read all packaged food labels. The food industry is sneaky with the chemicals and word replacements. Soy and sugar replacements seem to be in everything!
Whenever I turn down a high calorie food instead of feeling deprived, I note it in my food diary and the calorie content of that food. On days where I very nearly don't go to the gym I note that down also. At the end of the week, I tot up how many extra calories I would have consumed/ not burned and take it away from my loss. Seeing the weight I would still be had I given into these impulses keeps me on the straight and narrow. Instead of feeling deprived, I feel empowered! :)