Posted: September 12, 2016

When many people think of dieting, negative thoughts come to mind. It means giving up your favorite foods for a certain period of time … but it doesn’t have to be this way. Instead of thinking “diet,” think “lifestyle.” Consider: What do you want to do to improve your lifestyle?

A good way to go about this is gradually. It’s tough on your mind and your body when you completely uproot the lifestyle you’ve been grounded in. A good first thing to try is portion control. If you go out to eat, cut your burger in half first thing so that you know how much to allot yourself to eat. Take the leftover home for lunch tomorrow at work! If the cookies in the cookie jar are calling your name, limit yourself to one a day. Rejoice in the fact that you have self-control to only have one cookie instead of the whole jar. Oftentimes, we think that our minds are in control of our body but in reality, our stomach controls our body. By starting off limiting portion sizes, it will become easier to gauge when you’re actually full and will feel satisfied.

Along with portion sizes, cut out certain foods gradually. If you’re like me and LOVE grains, start out limiting your intake. Carbs can often leave you feeling hungry, which causes more weight gain from not feeling satisfied. Only have pasta once a week for dinner. Try mixing some greens in with your sandwiches. In time, you’ll be able to successfully limit your intake and will feel fuller longer.

Start changing your mindset from “I can’t do this” to “If I do this, I’ll be healthier.” We all want to live a long healthy life, but that’s easier said than done. If you start with your biggest weakness (your mind & thoughts), you’ll slowly begin to realize that this maybe isn’t as tough as you thought it would be.

Moral of the story: this process takes time. Be patient and be kind to yourself. You can do it!

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