When it comes to dieting, there’s no one-size-fits-all. From Beachbody to Keto, there’s a fad diet for every day of the week, but do these so-called miracle diets actually work? For the vast majority of the population, the answer is a firm no. These diets might advertise themselves as “perfect for everyone” and a “quick fix,” but they’re nothing more than smoke and mirrors.
Research suggests that restrictive eating through these fad diets can actually lead to more weight gain. This yo-yo dieting is bad news for your body, and it also makes a mess of your self-esteem. It’s easy to feel like you’re not good enough if you don’t measure up to the ladies on the glossy covers of magazines. Here’s a diet we can all get behind: sweets don’t have to be a guilty pleasure. The key to health, like anything in life, is balance. It’s time to break up with those diets that don’t work and embrace a balanced lifestyle.
Start with Your Plate
Balanced eating is something that seems hard at first, but it’s actually easy once you give it a try. If you’re struggling to eat right at home, your plate might be to blame. Though simple, your plate has a lot of control over what you eat and how you eat it. First of all, how big is your plate? If it’s too big, you’re likely overeating since you’ll naturally want to fill the plate. Getting smaller plates is an easy way to commit to smaller, healthier portions.
Second, how divided is your plate? Americans have the tendency to load their plates with meat and use a starch or a veggie as a side. While there’s nothing wrong with protein-heavy meals every once in a while, this isn’t always the smartest option. Instead, fill at least half the plate with veggies. Not only are veggies filling and low-calorie, but they’re amazing for you. Fill the other half of the plate with a lean protein like meat or a meat-substitute.
Break Down Big Meals
How many times a day do you catch yourself getting hungry between meals? These mid-day bouts of hunger lead to unwanted cravings and over-indulgence. Instead of focusing on the three main meals a day that leaves you hungry for hours, opt for smaller, more frequent meals. This is easier than you think. For example, instead of eating your lunch at noon, split it in half and enjoy the first portion at 11 am and the second portion at 2 pm. This way you’re not left ravenous before the next meal time.
If breaking down your big meals isn’t an option, try snacking. I don’t mean you should have chocolate in between lunch and dinner (at least, not every day!), but you can easily have healthy snacks ready to cut down on cravings. Get to know your body. Learn when you’re most likely to be hungry on a daily basis and plan accordingly.
Have Your Cake and Eat It Too
There’s nothing wrong with a little indulgence. In fact, many nutritionists recommend enjoying your favorite treat every now and then. As long as you’re eating predominantly healthy, natural foods throughout the day, there’s no harm in a bulk candies order to enjoy over time or an after-dinner brownie.
These are the things that make life sweet. You don’t have to give up on the simple joys of life just because a diet fad says so. Make your own diet that works for you, and surround yourself with healthy choices. Knowing you can reach for that second cookie is often enough to keep your healthy eating in check so you can feel good about your body and your mind.