Friday, April 17, 2009

Controlling Portions to Curb Your Weight

Many people are afraid to “diet” because they hear that word and hear “deprive.” It doesn’t have to be that way. A big factor in losing weight has more to do with changing your lifestyle, rather than starving yourself for a while and then returning to the same old habits.

One of the big reasons that many people find themselves on a rollercoaster with their weight is that they go on a diet, only to set themselves up for failure by setting as a reward for losing weight some “special food” that will only start them back on the same track that got them overweight to begin with. I mean it may seem like an enticing reward to say that you’ll have that chocolate cake once you have lost 5 pounds. But then when you have lost that amount of weight, you eat the cake and then you are off your diet and back to eating the way you did before your diet.

A better choice might be to reward yourself with an event, or special item that you might want to get yourself. Like you might want to promise yourself a date with your wife to the movies or maybe buy yourself a cd or fishing rod when you reach a certain goal.

As far as making your diet work without seeming to be starving yourself, I suggest that you start by deciding to stop eating when you are no longer hungry, not when you are stuffed. A good way to do that is to control your portion size. Use the suggested serving size as a guide to how much to eat at one sitting. Eat until you are not hungry but stop there.

You may find that you are hungry again in a couple hours and that is OK. Then have a small snack to curb hunger until your next meal. This is what some people refer to as a grazing diet. These small in between meal snacks keep you from being hungry all the time and without this discomfort, you are more likely to remain on a diet.

One thing to keep in mind is that most portions served in restaurants these days are more than actual serving sizes and if you eat out a lot, you should make a habit of bringing home about half of the meal and saving for another meal. Not only will this help in losing weight, but it will also help with your wallet as well.

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