Crave chocolate but don’t know how to indulge without making that waistline bulge? Are salty snacks the treat du jour? If so, the days of worrying about all those calories and fat grams are over. Learn how to incorporate those favorite snack foods into a healthy diet.
Abstaining Does Not Work
Ever tried cutting out chocolate, potato chips, cookies, cake, or even bread? How long did it take before the cravings came back and the pounds were right back on the scale? Abstaining from those favorite foods is not the answer. That route will only lead to binging, and then comes the guilt, and then the hopelessness. It is a vicious, endless cycle of yo-yo dieting.
The answer is clear: don’t eliminate those favorite foods. The keys are moderation and wise choices. It is easy to incorporate snack foods into any diet and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Here are the simple steps:
- Make a list of twenty favorite foods. These foods can be snacks, junk food, entrees, or desserts. If it is difficult to come up with twenty favorites, think about those comfort foods reached for on a bad day. Those are the favorite foods that should be added to the list.
- Post the list of those twenty favorite foods on the refrigerator so it is always visible. Refer to the list as often as needed.
- Look for reduced sugar, sugar-free, or made with Splenda on box labels and packaging.
- Look for reduced fat or fat-free on box labels and packaging.
- Look for reduced calorie on box labels and packaging.
- In addition to reading claims on the front of boxes, check the nutrition labels on the back of the boxes. Look for the actual serving sizes and the amounts of fat, sugar, and calories per each serving.
- Use cooking substitutions, such as applesauce in place of oil, or skim milk instead of cream.
- Adhere to the serving sizes suggested on food labels.
- Eat one food item off the twenty favorite foods list each day. Save that favorite food for the time of day when cravings are most likely to begin. Instead of binging on unhealthy snacks, reach for something on the twenty favorite foods list. Once that craving has been satisfied, stop eating.
- Prepare these healthier foods and snacks for the whole family in order to promote wellness for everyone. Having a partner along for the weight-loss ride makes it that much easier to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
It is Worth the Effort
There are no easy solutions when it comes to losing weight and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It takes dedication and hard work. However, that does not mean cutting out those favorite comfort foods. Keep in mind that moderation and wise choices will keep a person on the path toward victory over binging, guilt, and hopelessness. It is possible to lose weight and lead a healthy lifestyle, while enjoying those favorite foods.