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Health and Fitness News

No Turning Back

Make your diet last with these helpful tips.

There are plenty of diet plans out there to help you lose weight. But as soon as you quit your diet and go back to your old eating habits, the weight quickly returns and you regret throwing away your fat jeans. If only you could find a diet you could stick with forever to end this weight loss roller coaster. But you can do it!

Some people say weight maintenance is harder than the actual weight loss, but go ahead and throw your fat jeans away. You won’t need them again if you follow these six bits of advice.

#1: Think Long Term

As you decide which diet plan to do, think long term. Is it something you can continue for longer than a few weeks or months? If not, as soon as you quit you’ll just regain the weight you lost, plus some. Fad diets may lead to quick weight loss, but because of their difficulty, most of them don’t work for weight maintenance. Choose a diet plan you can live with for the rest of your life. Pick something with no gimmicks or pills that doesn’t force you to avoid whole food groups. You may not lose weight as fast, but you’ll lose weight the healthy way and keep it off.

#2: Dear Diary

Keeping a food journal is a great way to not only lose weight, but also to maintain weight loss. Tracking everything you eat and drink helps keep you accountable. When you see the calories adding up, it reminds you to back off. Knowing you have to write down “brownie for dessert: 112 calories” or “soda with dinner: 140 calories” will strong arm you into making healthy choices well into the future.

#3: Set Your Goal for Two Years

The longer you stick with something new, the greater your chance of making it a habit. Studies show if you can adopt new eating habits for two years, you’re likely to make it a way of life. As they say, practice makes perfect. When you begin your weight loss journey, keep that two-year mark in your mind and don’t quit until you’ve reached it. After two years you’ll notice how much a healthy diet benefits your life and you won’t want to revert to your old ways if you could.

#4: Get Connected

The same tools that helped you lose weight also help to keep the weight from returning. One of those valuable tools is a support group. People in your life to keep you accountable are a proven way to stay on track. This might be family members, co-workers, online support groups, exercise partners, or your personal trainer, who can encourage and motivate you to eat healthy.

#5: New Coping Mechanisms

Where do you turn when you feel sad, stressed, or happy? Many people use food as a way of dealing with their emotions. There’s something about a bowl of ice cream or a candy bar that cheers you up. Unfortunately, comfort foods usually aren’t fruits and vegetables. Instead of turning to food for comfort, learn healthy ways of coping with your emotions. This could be exercising, talking with a counselor, or taking a hot bath.

#6: Eat Often

It may sound like an oxymoron, but to avoid weight gain you need to keep your belly satisfied. When you feel famished and low on energy, you’re more likely to overeat and make poor food choices. Start your day off with a high-protein, high-fiber breakfast, and then every few hours eat a healthy snack or small meal.