Diet food should be the best food.
If I had a dollar for every time I've heard someone say something along the lines of "diet food tastes like cardboard", "I wish diet food could taste like this", or "if diet food tasted like this, I could lose weight easily" I wouldn't even need a job. If you believe these misconceptions, fear not. I have come with tidings of great joy! I am here to bring you to the promised land! Diet food's are the same foods you likely already eat that are just prepared differently, slightly smaller portions, and use a few sneaky food substitutions.
The easiest way to elaborate on my point is to give you a personal example. When I'm not cutting, a fairly common meal for me is chicken, rice, and stir-fry veggies. When cutting, I simply switch the rice for double the veggies. With the brand of frozen veggies I buy, this saves me about 100 Calories and is actually more filling because of the added fiber.
Another typical meal for me is grilled chicken, lima beans, and mashed potatoes. To cut back on this meal I simply have 1/2 cup of potatoes instead of 1 cup. This also saves approximately 100 Calories.
Prepare now so you don't have to have willpower later.
This advice goes for almost every aspect of your life (I could write a whole article about how most of the time we sin it's because we were in a situation we shouldn't have been in to start with.) but especially for dieting. Prepare your lunch before you go to work! This is the absolute easiest way to make sure you don't choose to eat a 1,500 Calorie combo meal at your nearest fast food joint. You're probably cooking dinner most nights anyway. It's just as easy to go ahead and cook enough food to last for a few days' lunch as it is to cook for just supper. Take the extra 10 minutes to make extra and put it in tupperware containers to take to work or school and you're golden. I'm willing to bet you spend well over 10 minutes scrolling on social media.
If you like to snack during the day, no problem. Make sure you have low Calorie snacks on hand. Throw some carrots or a mini bag of light butter popcorn in your lunch box as you leave the house.
Do you have a social event coming up? No problem. Almost every restaurant on the planet has low Calorie options. Get a salad with low-fat dressing. Get grilled chicken instead of fried chicken. Nowadays, most restaurants even have the Calories listed right on the menu; however, make sure to add a buffer on top of the Calories listed on the menu. Simply using an extra couple of tablespoons of oil when cooking your meat can add 250 Calories that you didn't account for. I recommend adding a 25% buffer by taking what the menu says and multiplying it by 1.25. (If you're on a very strict diet, such as a contest prep, I recommend a 30% buffer.)
Another great, and often overlooked tip for staying full while dieting, is drinking more. When our stomachs are empty a hormone called Ghrelin is sent to the hypothalamus of our brain, telling it that it needs food. As a response, we feel hungry. As the stomach stretches, the production of Ghrelin slows down. Thus, drinking more can curb your appetite between meals. Zero Calorie carbonated drinks are even better for this purpose. I also talk about this in the How To Make Healthy Choices In The Real World article.
The main point here is that if your idea of dieting is synonymous with Chinese Water Torture, you've got the wrong idea. Dieting should not be a horrendous process. On the contrary, you should strive to make dieting as effortless as possible. As humans, we're programmed to take the path of least resistance, so we should do just that.
Thanks for reading! If you found this helpful, please share this post with your friends on Facebook. I'll be back next week with another fat loss topic. As always, God bless you AND your family and I'll see you next week.