First rule. This is a biggie here.
Forget the diet programs. Few of them are worth your time or your money, and they can lead to nothing but frustration in the end. With the exception of high-end meal delivery services that cater to your needs/wants and Weight Watchers that has been around for decades, I would recommend staying away from them all.
As part of this first rule, be sure to include those diet “aids” such as fat-dissolving supplements, shakes and any device that says it “does the exercise for you” while you relax. Not one of those companies has never talked to me or asked me for an honest review, but, if they did the odds are I would either flat-out refuse based on the possible health risks, or, review the product only to find it did not live up to its claims. That’s how sure I am that none of these items will ever do anything for you except deplete your bank account.
Now on to what DOES work.
- You should opt for low-calorie, low-fat and low-sodium foods and snacks. Suggestions include fresh fruit and vegetables, lean protein, homemade popcorn and chips, and desserts made with low-fat cream and sweeteners such as honey, molasses and stevia. Sorghum and agave are also good choices for sweeteners.
- Remember that what you eat/drink in restaurants is where most women tend to have trouble. But that doesn’t have to be the case. Stay with the above in regard to lean proteins and fresh fruit and vegetables, avoid sauces that are cream or cheese based (including salad dressings), skip the bread, and share a dessert such as creme brûlée. Alcohol should either be no more than 2 glasses of wine or cocktails. And while I’m speaking of cocktails make them as plain as possible. Try a good vodka (such as Tito’s or Absolute) on the rocks with a wedge of orange or lemon. Let the cubes melt a bit and you have vodka and water in the end. That’s much better for you than any mixer. Also limit yourself to dark liquors such as whiskey or rum (including white rum) to once per month or less.
- Measure your snacks. When you can’t make your own popcorn or chips, read the package to determine how much is one serving. Measure it out and put that into a small zip lock storage bag. Eat one when you use them. The same goes for crackers, pretzels, etc. Also, opting for low-sodium and low-fat varieties of these items is smart.
- Water. Drink 10 to 12 glasses per day to help your body rid itself of what it does not need. This will also give your skin, hair and nails a boost.
- Tea and coffee. Drink 2 or 3 cups or glasses per day. If you add cream use the small packaged cups of real cream that you can buy. These keep you from using a measuring cup when using a full bottle of creamer, and keep at room temperature. Stay to 100 calories or less per cup/glass. If you need sweetener, use honey or again stevia is a good option.
- Dairy. Yogurt is something every woman should consume, unless she has medical reasons. One or two containers per day is great for you. Almond milk is a fantastic choice, as it’s low-calorie and makes super delicious hot chocolate. Laughing Cow brand cheese could be your new bff if you’re a cheese lover – use it in omelettes, sauces as well and you may even find you prefer it to others.
- Cinnamon and cayenne pepper. Use both of these daily. I sprinkle cinnamon in my hot coffee or hot tea, on my cereal and in my yogurt. I also sprinkle cayenne pepper in my yogurt – it’s delicious in fruit flavors such as peach or strawberry. Another great way to use both of these is in applesauce. Opt for the individual applesauce containers that are approximately 100 calories each, and add in the cinnamon and cayenne. I prefer the red pepper flakes to the ground cayenne but the choice is yours.
Don’t expect miracles.
If you want to stay healthy, enjoy life and still keep a fit body and good skin, you should be realistic about your expectations. Remember that “Rome was not built in a day” and neither will any good, healthy eating/exercise program give you the results you want in a short time.
Learn more about how to eat well and stay within a beneficial range of calories that keep your energy high. Begin an exercise program that includes at-home reps/sets yoga and time walking, running or on your own fitness equipment.
Most of all this.
Be sure of the state of your health. This can only be determined by making a visit to your primary physician and discussing any concerns you may have – including weight management.
Let’s all enjoy the best year ever!