So what to do? Here are 10 tips to change unhealthy habits and help you shed fat like melting snow on a hot day!
1. Replace doing something with doing something else. Rather than trying to keep yourself from doing your habit all the time, try to create a new habit that operates in the same situation.
2. Tell a friend. Your own motivation can break down easily, so enlist help. If for instance you’re embarking on a radical change in lifestyle, find a friend who is willing to try it out, too.
3. Drink a glass of water and make yourself think. Habits want to work on autopilot. So, when you’re trying to change your behavior, set things up so that your autopilot doesn’t work. Break the pattern by doing something that you wouldn’t normally do in that moment, like drink a glass of water.
4. Replace unhealthy snacks with healthy ones. If you know you can’t resist brownies and muffins, don’t keep a mix in your pantry. Eliminate all temptations and replace with healthy choices.
5. Banish all high-calorie condiments and sugars. A real no-no is sugar added to anything or consuming drinks containing sugar (fructose, corn-syrup etc. are no-goes).
6. Load up on veggies/salads. Your rule for life is that two thirds of your plate should be vegetables or salad. The one third can be split between protein or starchy carbohydrates (preferably one of the two).
7. Ban fast food. A study of 1,713 adults who have had long-term success with weight loss demonstrated that people who eat at fast-food restaurants fewer than twice a week have greater success with their weight loss.
8. Ban liquid calories. Water is your best friend and will help you lose weight. Most people understand that sugary sodas add calories, yet still believe that sweet tea and fruit juices are healthy. Sweetened tea is no less calorie-dense than soda, and you are better off eating the fruit than drinking the juice.
9. Be accountable. The best way is to have a professional coach, but if you cannot afford that, find a diet buddy you check in with or a support group. Keep a food diary. Tracking your daily food choices takes only a few minutes, but can double your weight-loss success.
10. Order smaller portions. Start ordering smaller portions and ask the server to leave out the carbs and add extra veggies. Data suggests that people who order smaller portions or share a plate at restaurants are more successful with weight loss. If available, order a lunch portion, an appetizer, or a children’s meal—or put up to half your meal into a doggy bag before you begin eating. w
Health experts Joy Martina, Ph.D., and her husband Roy Martina, M.D, are co-authors of the new book Sleep Your Fat Away (Morgan James 2015). Joy and Roy are passionate about health, longevity and fitness. They describe themselves as “health food lovers, exercise maniacs, and happiness addicts” who never go to bed angry or stressed. Visit www.SleepYourFatAway.com.