Diet Tip Like What You Eat

I remember hearing a saying some years ago that went, You can’t always do what you would like, but you ought to like what you do. I took it to heart in the realm of work. There are lots of times I would rather be doing something else, but I really do love my job. That makes it doable. I think the same goes for learning to eat healthy instead of just dieting.

So here it is with a twist:

You can’t always eat what you would like, so you ought to like what you eat! If I make my healthy choices ones I actually look forward to they become treats in my mind. I feel rewarded when I sit down to eat them, instead of feeling like I am doin’ time.

Diet Tip Digital Kitchen Scale

My husband bought me a nice digital kitchen scale. I can put an empty plate or bowl on it and set it to zero before weighing my food, so I don’t have to dirty another container. It can be set for ounces or grams with one touch.

I was surprised to see that the amount that I thought was one once (one cup) of cereal was actually 2 OUNCES! On the other hand, I was shorting myself on cooked chicken breast because it looked like more than I thought. Since most package labels give a serving size in grams, even if they also give you the approximate equivalent in ounces or cups.

Now I don’t have to pull out the measuring cups and spoons all the time.

Diet Tip Fish

Aldi’s has frozen fish, mahi mahi, tilapia (which is my favorite), orange rouphy.. etc. Each filet is only 100 calories!!!

Some people don’t like fish because it’s too fishy, or don’t know how to prepare it. Buy a thing of lemon-pepper seasoning. Take a skillet, (NO OIL), put 1/3 cup of water in it, and put the fish in. Then just keep shaking the seasoning all over the fish and keep flipping the fish ever few minutes.

It doesn’t take long at all, the taste of the lemon-pepper seasoning completely takes out the fishy taste! For dinner, eat a cup of broccoli boiled in chicken broth, and 2/3 filet of fish, which is still a really low calorie dinner!

No Scale Like Your Scale

Invest in a good bathroom scale, or weigh in at the gym. Whatever you do, CONSISTENTLY WEIGH YOURSELF ON THE SAME SCALE. Even if you suspect yours is a few pounds off, it will show your progress.

Scales are all calibrated differently and show you weighing wildly different weights on the same day. I was at a national weight event, weighed in on one professional scale and had it show me weighing 13 lbs more than the scale next to it. Both of which were different from my bathroom scale at home! (They almost had to offer me therapy, I was so freaked out by that 13 lbs!)

So be consistent in what scale you use to weigh yourself to really see your progress!

Diet Tip Plan Your Menu

On Sundays, my husband & I plan our supper menu. Later I plan out my lunches and snacks to try to have a balanced diet. (I always have cereal for breakfast).

Mondays I do my grocery shopping. A few minutes of planning the week really takes a lot of stress out of getting supper on the table each night. And we save money by not stopping to pick supper up. By planning ahead, many mornings I can throw part of supper either in the crock pot or marinate the meat. Both are excellent ways of adding flavor to our foods.

If I come across an interesting recipe during the week, I just make sure to have it handy on Sundays. Our menus are never the same twice & are never boring.

Diet Tip Sweet Potato

The sweet potato is my secret weapon. I discovered it by accident.

When I eat one small sweet potato at breakfast or lunch, I’m not very hungry the rest of the day. It’s such an obvious difference that I researched it online and found out that recent studies show that the sweet potato stabilizes blood sugar.

So if you’re like me and have a hard time controlling your appetite, try it. Typically, I eat one small sw. potato at lunch and lose a half-pound on the next day’s weigh-in. It doesn’t matter if I eat it baked, mashed, in a quesadilla, with sour cream, butter, whatever. As long as I don’t skip breakfast, it’s very consistent.

Normally I don’t feel hungry for 4 to 6 hours and never get ravenous.

Make Good Use of Your Downtime

A lot of times in the past I went off my diet because I felt I didn’t have time to make healthy meals.

Now I take a bit of weekend downtime to pre-pack breakfast, snack, and lunch for the week ahead. Half a shelf in my refrigerator is reserved for my pre-portioned meals. Kind of like doing Nutri-system for a LOT less money. While I am packing those meals, I have something in the oven for dinner for a few nights. For example, on Sunday I am going to set up for the week ahead while I bake some salmon and a shrimp dish. Two different entrees that we can pick at for leftovers for dinner for a few nights. Midweek I will pick up a rotisserie chicken and that will take my husband and me through a few more dinners.

Diet Tip Healthy Breakfast

Keep the following items on hand or in stock so if you run out of time, you always have something to munch on:

Shelf-Stable Suggestions:

  • Whole grain cereal
  • Instant oatmeal
  • Granola
  • Whole wheat English muffins or bread
  • Fruit – Nuts or trail mix

Peanut butter Refrigerated Options:

  • Nonfat (skim) milk
  • Nonfat yogurt
  • Fat-free cottage cheese
  • Reduced fat cheese
  • Cut-up fruit
  • Hard-boiled egg (if you’re able to cook the night before)
  • Instant oatmeal
  • Granola
  • Whole wheat English muffins or bread
  • Fruit
  • Nuts or trail mix
  • Nonfat (skim) milk
  • Nonfat yogurt
  • Fat-free cottage cheese
  • Reduced fat cheese
  • Cut-up fruit
  • Hard-boiled egg (if you’re able to cook the night before)

Healthy Combinations:

  • Whole grain cereal with nonfat milk and fruit
  • Whole wheat English muffin or slice of bread with peanut butter and nonfat milk
  • Oatmeal with nuts and nonfat milk
  • Hard-boiled egg and fruit
  • Nonfat yogurt or fat-free cottage cheese with fruit and nuts

Focus on What You Enjoy

I read this somewhere and it’s true.

Don’t run on a treadmill just because you read it was the best thing to do. Get into a fun class so you look forward to your exercise. I take salsa lessons 3 times a week and I sweat a lot! Maybe the same or more than on a treadmill and I absolutely love it!

When I’m on a treadmill, I can’t wait to get to the last minute, but in my salsa class, I wish it went on forever! I’m sweating, I can hardly even breathe, my calves hurt but I’m STILL dancing. I love it! There’s a lot of interesting things out there, like salsa, jazz, hip-hop, ballet, belly dancing, flamenco, folklore, etc.

There’s karate too. In sports, there’s ice skating, going out for a bicycle ride. Um, pole dancing!!! Even paintball! Get creative!!!

Diet Tip Fluff Fruit

It’s a totally made up name, but it works for this easy summer dessert. Two containers of fat free or sugar free cool whip, one large package of sugar free jello (flavor of choice), diced/sliced fresh fruit to complement jello flavor.

Mix the cool whip with the jello until thoroughly combined. In a clear plastic or glass bowl (or individual glasses) layer diced fruit and then fluff mixture. Create as many layers as desired (I usually do 3 or 4).

I’ve made this with rasberry jello & apricots, orange jello with a pineapple/mango/mandarin orange/coconut mixture, strawberry jello and strawberries and other berries. It is very light and very yummy — a great way to get extra fruit in (you can vary the ratio of fruit to cool whip mixture based on preference).