Seasoned dieters know plenty of the tricks for keeping their eating in check. Beyond the usual strategies - eating right, getting plenty of exercise and maybe keeping a food diary – they might use more subtle tactics for keeping portions down. They’ll use smaller plates or taller glasses, for instance, to give the illusion that they’re getting more food and drink than they really are. They’ll make sure to put tempting foods out of sight – and keep healthy ones in plain view. What they may not realize is that there are other influences in the environment – much less obvious ones – that could still throw their eating off course. Read more »
What you drink could affect what foods you choose to eat.
We tend to pay a lot more attention to what we eat than what we drink – we usually decide on a beverage after we’ve decided what we’re going to eat.
But there are times when the beverage calls the shots. Pour yourself a glass of cold milk, and you’re suddenly craving a chocolate chip cookie. A steaming mug of coffee brings on the urge for a sugary donut on the side. And is there anyone who hasn’t noticed that beer pairs really well with salty, fatty foods – like pizza, hot dogs and peanuts? Okay – so if certain beverages can steer you to eat the wrong foods, is it possible that other beverages could help you make better choices? Researchers at the University of Oregon and Michigan State University think so. Read more »
It seems to me there are two extremes when it comes to meal planning. There are people who never plan – the ones who prefer to “wait and see” what they feel like eating. They’re also the ones who, understandably, don’t have much discipline when it comes to sticking to a diet plan. On the other hand, there are those whose meal planning is just a tad too routine.
When I was in high school, my best friend’s mom stuck to the same menu week after week – Monday was chicken, Tuesday was spaghetti… you get the idea. The only time I’d accept an invitation for dinner was on Sunday – or, “surprise night”. Somewhere in between these extremes, though, lies a healthy approach to meal planning that doesn’t have to be stressful or time-consuming. So if your idea of meal planning means choosing between sausage or pepperoni on your pizza, listen up – here are some pointers that might help. Read more »
I’ll never forget a client I had years ago. He brought in a ‘perfect’ food diary. He followed his meal plan to the letter, and every calorie (or so he thought) was accounted for. But his weight just wasn’t moving the way he’d hoped. As we talked, I noticed that he kept popping breath mints in his mouth. When he started unwrapping his second roll of mints, I just had to ask –exactly how many mints was he eating every day? “These little things? – I don’t know… maybe 5 or 6 rolls.” Who knew that “those little things” added up to more than 300 extra calories a day? Read more »
People have different reasons for wanting to shape up – finding out what motivates you can help you stay on track.
There’s no doubt about it – change is hard. I frequently tell my clients that my job is much easier than theirs – my role is to advise them on how to eat better, while they’ve got the more difficult task of having to actually do it. But my job doesn’t stop at simply handing out advice – I also try to help people find what it is that will motivate them to make changes. And the reasons are all over the map. For some, just the goal of getting healthier is all it takes to kick start the process. On the other hand, that probably won’t motivate the ones who tell me (and I’ve heard this more times than I can count), “I’m perfectly healthy, I’m just fat.” Read more »