If I told you that you could lose weight by eating Oreo cookies for breakfast, cake for lunch and your favorite international cuisine for dinner, would you believe me? Perhaps you would, simply because the advertising that you are used to today is saturated with the infamous “catch” tactic. The truth is, you actually can lose weight and maintain the results by eating the foods that you enjoy. By understanding the distinguished combination of characteristics of this lifestyle, I am certain that you can reach your weight loss goals without feeling deprived.
What can I eat and when should I eat?
This part is simple. Eat whatever it is that you have a taste for. Sounds great, right? As you probably suspected though, there are a few catches. One, make sure that you are actually hungry before you start eating. It sounds silly, I know. But, think about all of the extra calories we consume when our bodies aren’t even hungry. One of the ladies at the office always brings brownies on Friday afternoons or guy’s poker night always entails an infinite supply of snacking favorites and so on and so on…making it difficult not to partake.
Just remember, food is supposed to be used to fuel our bodies for the next activity, and is not meant to be a pastime. America is programmed to eat breakfast between 7AM and 8AM, lunch at noon and dinner at 6PM. Throw these traditional approaches to meal times out the window! Your body will tell you when you are hungry. That’s all there is to it! If you are hungry at 10AM, eat at 10AM and by the same token, if you aren’t hungry for dinner till 8PM, then don’t eat dinner till 8PM.
The second catch is that you should only eat until you are satisfied, not stuffed. We make this mistake all the time, right? I really can’t figure out what the reason for overeating is, other than perhaps we feel that if we don’t maximize on the opportunity for indulgence now, we may not have the opportunity to indulge this same way again for a period of time. But, is that really a good enough reason to leave a restaurant with our pants unbuttoned? I was on a cruise ship when I began to develop this strategy. It occurred to me that there wasn’t even one second of any day that food would be unavailable. Spreads of food covered tables at any given time on any floor of our cruise ship. We were not ever going to run out of food. The same theory applies to our lives everyday. We will always be able to somehow eat whatever it is we crave pretty much whenever we want it (within reason). So why overeat anymore?
Why most diets fail
Most diets actually don’t fail, at first. For those of us who are able to eat nothing but cabbage soup for three weeks, the concept proves to be a great success at the end of the three weeks. And those of us who haven’t eaten any carbs since 1997, are looking fabulously skinny today. However, there are only a few of us that these changes have worked for in the longer term. Think about whether you are truly prepared to give up pizza or chocolate forever before deciding to try a quick fix weight loss plan. At the end of the day, to lose weight the only thing that matters is that we burned more calories than we ate. It doesn’t matter where they came from. I am not discounting the importance of nutritional values found in foods that I haven’t talked much about. Most of us would put many of those foods into our category of cravings anyway.
The keys to making this strategy successful are adherence and patience. Translation: Commit to the concept and keep your goals realistic. If you are going to try some new fad diet, ask yourself if you will be able to abide by its parameters forever. If you choose to adopt my theory for weight loss, don’t be discouraged if it takes up to six months before you’ll see drastic results. It has taken many of my clients a year to lose 20 pounds, but they have kept the weight off because they made changes to their eating habits that they can realistically maintain for the rest of their lives. They still enjoy great food, but they never feel the need to overeat anymore.
Thank you for reading the SignatureForum Lifestyles newsletter this month. Next month, learn how to make sure that your new workout regimine isn’t causing you gain weight. Meanwhile, be sure to check out SignatureForum’s network of consumer friendly websites that will give you the resources you need to look and feel you very best.
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