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11 Simple Diet Changes Make A Big Difference On The Scale

Updated on April 28, 2015
Scale
Scale | Source

Dieting

There are many diet plans, pills, shakes, and books on the market today. People want to be healthy and feel good but a strict diet isn’t always the way to go. The word diet carries a negative image of starvation and frustration for some people.

Dramatic changes in food can make people anxious or feel deprived. Certain foods are called Comfort Foods for a reason.

Making just one small change per week can reduce the feeling that you’re dieting or denying yourself something.

There are 11 simple changes that can make a big difference in how you feel and look.

#1 Replace White Bread With Wheat Bread

The ingredients in sandwiches are rarely as damaging to our waistlines as the bread that covers them.

Switching white bread with whole wheat bread can mean the difference between staying full and being hungry again in a short amount of time.

The simple carbohydrates found in white bread turns to sugar and our bodies burn it up rather quickly as opposed to the complex carbohydrates that are in whole wheat which burn slowly and keep us fueled and full longer.

#2 Dip the Chips

Dips like fresh salsa and humus are wonderful, healthy snacks!

Unfortunately, when they are covering a greasy, fried salty chip the point is lost.

When you replace regular chips with baked, low sodium tortilla chips or even pretzels, you will notice a big difference because of the reduced salt and grease.

Hard Boiled Eggs
Hard Boiled Eggs | Source

#3 Hard Boiled Eggs

Keep a few hard boiled eggs in the refrigerator and eat one while preparing meals or when you are feeling cranky or hungry. The protein will help sustain you and satisfy your craving for grabbing something unhealthy.

#4 Pre-Cooked Chicken Breasts

Grilled chicken breast is a wonderfully versatile form of protein. When hunger strikes and there is pre-cooked chicken in the refrigerator, the odds that you will build something healthy increase.

Chicken breasts can be:

  • added to a whole wheat tortilla wrap with salsa and a small amount a guacamole
  • used in a chicken salad with spinach or romaine lettuce, tomatoes and chia seeds
  • warmed up with a little mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce
  • served with some sautéed mushrooms and red onions

The possibilities of throwing together a quick and healthy meal when the chicken is already cooked are endless.

Chia Seeds
Chia Seeds | Source

#5 Add Chia Seeds

Chia Seeds are a new super food. This wonderful seed is not only packed with high amounts of protein, omega 3, omega 6, antioxidants, iron and fiber but they also help you stay full longer and regulate your sugar levels.

When chia seeds mix with liquid they expand to 9 times their original size so they will help keep you full.

These tiny seeds have no noticeable taste and they can be eaten whole or soaked.

Whole chia seeds can easily be sprinkled on oatmeal, salads, vegetables, baked potatoes, any casserole or added to smoothies.

Soaked chia seeds can be used in parfaits, baking recipes or as a pudding.

Any recipe can have an added nutritional boost with a sprinkle of chia seeds being the only change.

#6 Raw Honey and Pure Maple Syrup Instead of Sugar

We all know that we should give up sugar but it is so hard to do!

When sugar substitutes were introduced it seems like the perfect solution. Unfortunately artificial sugars have turned out to cause more problems than refined sugar so that option doesn’t have the same appeal.

There is another option however.

Replacing refined sugar with a natural one is a good compromise between your body's needs and your taste buds.

A few delicious sweeteners that will keep you satisfied are:

  • Stevia *make sure it is pure Stevia leaves and does not have added ingredients
  • Raw Organic Pure Honey
  • Pure Organic Maple Syrup

Although the sugar substitutions listed above are a whole lot better for your body and your brain, moderation is still key.

Our bodies can process and use 6-9 teaspoons of sugar per day. Any additional amounts of sugar will turn straight to fat.

Snacks

It’s important to acknowledge that the snack craving will come.

It would be nice if we only needed 3 meals a day but that isn’t realistic so be prepared.

Nuts!  Pistachios, Walnuts, Almonds and Pumpkin Seeds
Nuts! Pistachios, Walnuts, Almonds and Pumpkin Seeds | Source

#7 Go Nuts

When the salt cravings kick in and have you grabbing for a bag of chips, arm yourself with nuts instead.

Almonds, pistachios, walnuts and peanuts are great choices and if you can find them still in the shell, it’s even better!

Fresh cut melons. Watermelon, Honeydew melon and Cantaloupe
Fresh cut melons. Watermelon, Honeydew melon and Cantaloupe | Source

#8 Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth The Natural Way

Try to make sure there are always some delicious seasonal fruit at your fingertips and no candy in the house and you’ll be amazed by how quickly the fruit cravings will replace the candy ones.

The amounts of natural sugar found in these fruits are enough to satisfy even the meanest sweet tooth!

Fruits like red grapes, peaches, pineapple, watermelon and honeydew melon are perfect for sugar cravings.

#9 Eat Dark Chocolate

A sweet tooth is one thing and a chocolate craving is something else!

No amount of fruit or substitute is going to satisfy a deep need for chocolate.

Dark chocolate may not be your first choice but if it’s your only option, it will really do the trick. If you pop 2 or 3 dark chocolate mini pieces in your mouth after a meal, you have not only warded off the dessert craving but you’ve also done something wonderful for your heart. Dark chocolate that has at least 70% cocoa has many health benefits beyond the number on the scale.

#10 Use Smaller dishes and Utensiles

It may sound too simple but it really works!

When the bowl, plate and utensils we use during our meals are smaller, we eat less.

The reason behind this particular change is that your plate still appears full but your portion is smaller. When using smaller forks and spoons, it forces you to eat slower so it is easier to recognize when you’re actually full.

#11 Stand Up

Something as easy as opting to stand instead of sitting during kid's activities or performances can do more good than one would think.

We have all heard that taking the stairs instead of using the elevator is helpful simply because your moving and the same principle applies here. Standing will make a difference in your muscles, body temperature and metabolism.

Feel and Look Better

One or all of these small changes can have a dramatic impact on how you feel and look over time.

Pack your kitchen with foods that will help you succeed and eliminate of all the things that set you up for failure.

You're worth it!

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    • Nettlemere profile image

      Nettlemere 4 years ago from Burnley, Lancashire, UK

      These are sensible suggestions. Is it best to store the hard boiled eggs in their shell or peeled?

    • roxanne459 profile image
      Author

      Roxanne Lewis 4 years ago from Washington

      I always remove the shell before I put them in the refrigerator just because they come off really easy while the eggs are still warm. I learned the hard way that they are a real pain to peel once they are cold. Besides, the fact that they are ready to grab and eat is the reason they work so well for me as a quick protien fix. :)

    • profile image

      summerberrie 4 years ago

      Need to print out and place on the refrigerator. Great reminders and suggestions! Thanks, Roxanne.

    • Steve West profile image

      Steve West 4 years ago from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

      That's great Roxanne459, how did you know I was starting a healthier eating habit today, no kidding! I love #9. Great hub and information I am going to look into the chia seeds as well. Thank you.

    • Dr Pooja profile image

      Dr Pooja 4 years ago

      Simple but effective means to adopt a healthy lifestyle .

    • MelChi profile image

      Melanie Chisnall 4 years ago from Cape Town, South Africa

      Excellent tips here! I eat dark chocolate, nuts, pineapples and haven't had white bread for years. Cutting out sugar also makes a huge difference. Voted up! :)

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Roxanne....OK, I confess.....I hate diets....I despise scales, and I refuse to deny myself 24/7.....BUT, what you have presented here is great. It does matter when we make small changes and just stay on the ball.......just like every penny counts and every movement is burning a calorie....Thank you so much for this......Oh, kitchen tip from an old Granny: If you rinse hard-boiled eggs under cold water immediately from the stove, until they are cool enough to handle....the shells peel off with EASE!...................UP+++

    • LaThing profile image

      LaThing 4 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Great advise, I think all of them is do able for an average person... Is Chia seed same as Flax seed, or are they different? Thanks for sharing...... Voting up!

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      Excellent advice! Voted up and sharing.

    • roxanne459 profile image
      Author

      Roxanne Lewis 4 years ago from Washington

      You're not alone! Just the thought of going on a regimented DIET makes me hungry lol

    • roxanne459 profile image
      Author

      Roxanne Lewis 4 years ago from Washington

      As a former Flax seed fanatic I can honestly tell you that they are both great but I now prefer Chia Seeds. They have more omega amounts and have high levels of protien, iron and more antioxidants than blueberries. The biggest selling point for me was that they don't need to be ground up or stored in the refigerator. Try them for a couple weeks and I'm sure you'll feel the difference :)

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      The bowl of fruit you posted looks very tempting and is one of my favorite snacks. Your advice to stand straight is one I need to remember, it does make a difference. Great post here and Voted up.

    • Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

      Marcy Goodfleisch 4 years ago from Planet Earth

      I like your idea of keeping hard boiled eggs on hand! That is so easy to do, and they are indeed a filling snack (and good for you). Great tips here; thank you!

    • Efficient Admin profile image

      Efficient Admin 4 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      These are very practical and useful tips that I think I can add to my schedule. This year so far I have replaced sugar with Stevia and eat nuts between breakfast and lunch, cut back on mindless grazing and lost 5 pounds. I hope I can keep it up and hubs like this motivate me. Voted up.

    • roxanne459 profile image
      Author

      Roxanne Lewis 4 years ago from Washington

      Good for you Efficient Admin! That is so inspiring to all of us who are seeking the control to live a healthier lifestyle. I believe it is a lifelong goal for most of us. The more we try, the more we learn about what works for us and what doesn't. The key is to keep moving forward to feeling good. Thank you :)

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