What should I eat to lose weight? A question I ask myself every day. I bet you do too.
The society has been always tough on women’s physique. I believe there are many women starved, or are starving themselves to meet the slim standard. The painful process is usually called “dieting”.
But good shape does not bring with it bad healthy conditions. I’ve learned from hard lessons about that. You should never sacrifice your health over a slim body. This is but a simple truth.
Before we move on to building our best body ever, you should build your mindset first:
- Health always comes first. Don’t ever sacrifice your health over the number on your scale.
- Building your best shape body is a life-time thing, so the frustrations in the first couple of weeks are no biggie.
- You can’t starve yourself to slim. Instead, you need the right fuel to help your body lose more weight. Remember, never starve yourself.
If you eat less than your body consume, you lose pounds. Eating more than your body needs, you gain weight. Simple as that.
If your metabolism is high, it’s easier for you to lose weight. Metabolism has to do with muscle, age and how much exercise you do each day.
It’s not what you eat, but how much you eat.
The line between healthy food and unhealthy food is the quantity. However healthy oatmeal is, it won’t be healthy for you to eat 2 pounds at a time. And who’s to say it’s unhealthy to eat an ice-cream in a month?
Dieting alone without any exercise could reduce your body muscle and lower down your metabolism. So diet and exercise should go on at the same pace to maximize the result.
Just remind yourself that you are to enjoy your healthy and slim life, and not get a thin body and tons of other healthy issues.
Do you need to lose weight?
One simple index can tell you this: BMI (Body Mass Index). Use a BMI calculator to see if you are overweight. The screen shot is just an example.
Note that there is no need for you to go on a diet if you are at your healthy weight. You can always turn to exercise to get a better shape though.
How much calories do you need?
We talked about the basic math to lose weight: eat less than your body need. Then how do we decide how much food you need?
On average scale, an adult woman should take in 1200 – 1400 Kcals per day. If you want to lose weight, take in 300 to 500 Kcals less each day. Mark it down on your notebook.
Or you can use a calorie calculator for help if you need.
WARNING: Do not take no more than 800 Kcals per day without doctors advice and supervision. It is extremely dangerous and unhealthy to your body.
What’s your daily schedule?
The core of losing weight is your overall food consumption. So you need to ration that wisely, which is the key to your best diet plan.
How many meals do you eat a day? What food you prefer? Do you have time to exercise? What sort of exercise do you prefer? How many hours do you sleep? What time do you get up? How often do you eat out? Can you afford a personal trainer?
Answer all these questions and have a better understanding about yourself. Thus you can make a better plan.
How to portion every meal?
Based on your daily schedule and the amount of calories you need everyday, make your own plan.
For example, if you are a late-sleeper, you may want to have a big breakfast and smaller dinner. If you have heavy workload during the day, your lunch could be in a rush and thus contains less food.
Usually, you can portion it like this: 3, 4, 3. With 30% of the food consumption in breakfast, 40% for lunch, and 30% for dinner.
Basically, it is the most ideal for each of your meal to meet such a standard: 1/4 of starch, 1/4 of protein, 1/2 of vegetable and a fruit.
If you think this is too much to process, buy a portion plate and/or bowl, gadgets like them can really make your weight-losing plan so much easier.
How much food you need?
Let’s take a look at the how much food you need each day. Note that the food portion we take about here is the raw weight. If you want to be more precise, feel free to buy a kitchen scale. Or you can use your hand to gauge upon.
On the first level, you should have a handful of grains or cereals everyday, which could weigh 250- 400g.
On the second level, a big handful of vegetables, about 300 500 g. A 200 – 400 g vegetable like apple or orange.
On the third level, protein half the size of your palm, plus an egg of some milk. Protein helps you stay away from hunger and keep your body muscle. If you don’t have enough protein in your body, your body will crave more for carbon-hydrate, too much of which could undo your diet progress.
On the top of the pyramid, you are seeing things that you should avoid during diet. The less you have, the better for your body, not just in terms of health, but also your body shape.
What food should you choose and what food to avoid?
Replace soft drinks with water, milk or diet coke, desserts with fruits, fried food with steam or backed food, and bread, noodles and other refined carbohydrates with corn, sweet potato and oatmeal.
Fish, lean pork, chicken breast and egg white are good protein for you. Beans the bean product such as tofu are also good veggie protein.
You should also consult your doctor’s opinion regarding whether you need nutritional supplement.
Stop thinking about all the food you can’t have, start to think about what a body you are sculpturing. Think about your goals and how healthy you are making your body. Diet is not hard at all if you make it all about yourself.
- Say no to unhealthy snakes, dessert and alcohol.
- Eat only when you are at dinner table. Stop eating while watching TV.
- Get yourself healthy snacks, which include nuts, dairy products and fruits.
- Don’t go shopping when you are hungry.
- If you overeat, just stop it there. Don’t give up all your plans. Don’t blame yourself too hard and keep remind yourself that this is not the end of the world, and you still have tomorrow to start over again.
- Use your phone to record what you eat everyday, and give yourself an evaluation everyday. This is how you make progress.