Since March is National Nutrition Month, you might be planning a fresh start to your diet and weight loss efforts for a healthier body. But many of the so-called “quick and easy” dieting options out there are far from healthy for your body, nor do they result in long-term weight loss. Instead of jumping on the next fad diet out there, keep these three important diet tips for weight loss in mind to help you on your journey towards a healthier, happier you.
1. Don’t Skip Meals
While it might seem logical that skipping meals and limiting your food intake will help you lose weight, this common dieting method can cause more health problems than it helps. Your body needs a variety of nutrients to function properly, so cutting out entire meals and severely limiting your calorie intake can lead to a whole host of health concerns.
When you skimp on meals and become very hungry, you’re much more likely to binge-eat junk foods and throw your weight loss efforts off track.
Instead, try to better control your portions at each meal, or divide one large meal into smaller snacks throughout the day.
2. Quality over Quantity
Another common weight loss mistake that many people make is planning their meals based purely on the number of calories they’re eating, rather than the quality of those calories. For example, even though a 200 calorie chocolate bar might have slightly fewer calories than a half cup of almonds, the almonds are ultimately the healthier choice.
3. Be Wary of “Diet” Options
You might be tempted to stock up on the “diet” or “low-fat” variations of the foods and drinks you already consume, but these can be even more unhealthy than the regular items. Ingredients like artificial sweeteners and other additives in diet soda, for example, or the added sugar used to make low-fat processed foods taste better can throw your diet off course.
Instead, let yourself indulge in a moderate amount of sweets or junk food every once in a while to help curb cravings and avoid the added bad ingredients found in “diet” and “low-fat” options. When it doubt, reach for fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.