Eat the Right Fat

Not all fats are bad. In fact, fat is an essential nutrient. However, a healthy diet should cut down on animal fat. Choose lean meat over fatty varieties. Grill rather than fry your steaks and other meats. Alternatively, you may steam, bake or barbecue your fish and poultry.

Some meat eaters have meat free days as part of a healthy eating plan.

In the supermarket, go for low fat versions of your favourite foods such as yoghurt, milk and mayonnaise.

In one study quoted in Foods That Harm, Foods That Heal (Reader’s Digest), diets containing essential poly- and mono-saturated varieties of fat were found more effective in weight control and in maintaining permanent weight loss.

Add nuts, seeds and olive oil to your diet and they will take care of your dietary fat needs.

Portion Control and Chewing

Portion size per meal may need to be cut in order to lose weight, especially where calorie dense foods like meat are concerned. To achieve this smaller dinner plates may be required.

However, large quantities of fresh fruits and raw vegetables contain mainly water and may be eaten in larger quantities but still provide low calories.

Eat slower. Give your taste buds time to appreciate the flavours. Let your digestive juices attack the food while you are still eating. This helps with weight loss.

Eat Regularly

Snack wisely between main meals.

Apples, bananas and oranges and a handful of nuts are better than a bag of crisps or bar of chocolate. Nuts are rich in fibre, essential fatty acids and protein. Fruits contribute to your recommended five a day of fruit and vegetable requirements.

For sweeter snacks dried fruits come in handy. A few figs or a handful of sultanas may be all that you need to keep the feeling of hunger at bay and satisfy a sweet tooth.

Do Regular Exercises and Have Enough Sleep

Whether it’s walking, running, swimming or going to the gym, exercise is an important part of weight control. Exercise burns off calories. Better yet, several hours after the actual exercise the metabolic rate remains high thus ensuring that more calories are utilised.

Adults are recommended to sleep seven to eight hours a night. Incidentally, adequate sleep is good for weight loss and weight control.

Watch Your Waistline

Fat stored around the waistline is thought to be the greatest indicator of risk for weight related diseases such as type 2 diabetes mellitus and heart disease. An effective weight control programme must include waist measurement. It is recommended that a woman’s non-pregnant waist should not go over 32 inches.

Enjoy Food

Above all food should be enjoyed.

If you are like most people you may find that your craving for junk foods like sweets and biscuits disappears after a few weeks on a healthy diet. Good luck. However, if you still consider a bar of chocolate or a packet of crisps a treat indulge yourself once in a while but factor in the additional calories in your exercise and meals.