Don't let cravings and bad habits keep you from losing weight! Learn how to overcome these common weight loss obstacles.
There are a million and one ways you can derail your weight loss efforts, including through routine snacking, off-and-on exercise
and falling into the wrong mind-set. Maybe you’ve tried before to get past such stumbling blocks, but nothing has worked.
This week's assignment: Make a list of your personal barriers, weak spots and obstacles to optimal health—pick one you struggle with from the following list of nine and practice the suggested solutions. Keep your list handy so you can work on your other hurdles once you clear the first one.
Solution: Eat more fruit (nature’s candy) and cut out artificially sweetened foods and treats. This will help your taste buds enjoy
the natural sweetness of fruit instead of craving foods that are hundreds of times sweeter than nature intended.
If fresh fruit alone doesn’t do it for you, try:
Solution: Breakfast helps prevent overeating and too much snacking during the day. Many people eat the majority of their food in the
evening, go to bed with a full stomach, wake up not hungry and skip breakfast as a result.
If that describes you, reset your appetite clock by skipping dinner one night so you will be genuinely hungry when you wake up. Once should do the trick. In a rush?Grab a handful of nuts and an apple or a piece of cheese and a pear—real foods that are relatively easy to eat on the run.
Solution: Change your routine to circumnavigate your “automatic pilot” eating behaviors. So much of eating is done out of habit that
when you alter how you spend your evenings, late-night binges can become a thing of the past.
Unplug the TV (often a trigger of mindless eating) for a week and plan some evenings out browsing a bookstore and playing cards at a friend’s house. Or stay in and read a book while drinking herbal tea or listen to soothing music during a bubble bath.
Solution: Put food in your mouth only when you’re seated at a table, with a plate in front of you. This rule helps you cut down on the random nibbles (handfuls of nuts or crackers, your kids’ uneaten chicken nuggets) you eat through the day—which can pack on hundreds of extra calories. Sitting and savoring your meals and snacks also increases your enjoyment of food.
Solution: If food is the main way you try to keep your mind off your problems, it’s time to rethink how and why you eat. Chances are,
overindulging makes you feel worse. Start by making a list of 10 things that make you happy that don’t involve food. Post
the list on your refrigerator and practice one of the activities the next time you feel emotions urging you to eat.
Need some ideas for your list? Try these: Drink iced tea while sitting on the porch, take a five-minute walk, color in a coloring book, read a magazine, do a crossword puzzle, give yourself a home facial or call a friend.
Solution: About 90 percent of people don’t eat enough fruits (the goal is 2 cups per day) and vegetables (goal is 2½ cups per day).
Produce is loaded with vitamins and minerals and contains high amounts of water and fiber, which can help you feel full. Keep
a veggie-fruit tray at eye level in your fridge so it is the first thing you see and is easy to grab.
Solution: Come up with a phrase to politely decline the next time a co-worker or friend pressures you to eat something fattening. Now
practice that phrase—in a mirror, in your kitchen, in your car. Keeping it on the tip of your tongue makes it easier to access
and soon "no" can become an automatic part of your vocabulary. Don’t be surprised if your healthful behavior starts to rub
off on others.
Here are some phrases to try:
Solution: Make a list of 10 things you like about yourself and post it on your bathroom mirror so you can read it daily. Giving yourself a daily pep talk can do wonders to keep you motivated and on track. Many women find it simpler to punish themselves with thoughts such as nothing I do seems to help. Negativity doesn’t motivate. Energize yourself daily with your positive self-image list and you probably will find it easier to live a healthful lifestyle.