When I asked my grandfather how to lose weight, he always told me these simple words: eat less and move more. My grandfather passed away 20 years ago and I am now a registered dietitian with a PhD in nutrition, counseling many patients who badly need to lose weight. I ask myself: what am I saying different than what my old grandfather used to say? What are my rules?
Am I saying the same thing?
The difference between what I say to my clients and what my grandfather used to say to me is that I show them how to do it. Most people know they have to eat less and move more to take in less or lose more calories but they do not know how to do it successfully.
My six weight loss rules for short are:
- Cut on Fat
- Cut on Sugar
- Cut on Starch
- Cut on Portions
- More Fruits & Vegetables
My grandfather summarized my six weight loss rules in five words. I agree with him completely but I do not agree with the fact that it is simple especially when life is so stressful and everywhere we turn to, there are plenty of comfort foods with easy access. How can we not search for sugary, fatty and salty foods when stressed, hungry or bored? What makes it so difficult to follow rules? Is it our genetics, our age, food habits, time of the day or simply mindless practices that make us fail again and again? The reasons can be different for different people but we know for sure that we are losing touch with our bodies and hunger cues.
These are ten brief suggestions to how to follow my grandfather’s or my own rules:
- Practice mindful eating
- Listen to your hunger cues
- Eat slow and chew well
- Don’t skip meals
- Plan meals and snacks ahead of time
- Keep a food and mood diary to know your trigger situations
- Find alternatives to food when bored or stressed
- Make baby steps to change bad food habits
- Make time for yourself
- Manage stress
As general my rules and suggestions seem to look, they are keys to successful weight loss. Let’s listen to our bodies and become conscious about our lifestyle. Let’s solve this puzzle with the help of a professional and friends and family support. Let’s learn how to eat right and exercise for better health without obsessive behaviors. Let’s manage our weight naturally and comfortably for life. We all deserve a healthy nice body and why not starting to make a change now!!!