11 Simple Diet Changes Make A Big Difference On The Scale
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.
#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.
#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.
- What is a Serving Size?
A serving size is the recommended amount of food or drink that should be consumed in one sitting or in one day. Everything from packaged food to fresh produce has a serving size associated with it. Some are there to inform us what our bodies need to
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.
#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!
#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.
- Tea for Health Benefits
Drinking tea on a regular basis is a wonderful gift to your body. There are many different kinds of tea out there and the choices can be overwhelming for someone who is looking to benefit from their nutritional value. All teas are loaded with antioxi
#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!