Many years ago a nutritionist passed along some great advice to me, and now I want to share it with you! You can make these simple diet changes to lose weight fast and improve your health significantly, without much effort. These tips will also help you maintain a healthy weight for the long-term!
Simple Diet Changes to Lose Weight Fast
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Step 1: Drink Cold Water Prior to Each Meal
There's no denying the health benefits of staying hydrated, but did you know that drinking a full glass of cold water prior to each meal can help you lose weight?
When you drink cold water, your body burns extra calories to warm it up to body temperature. Water also helps suppress your appetite by causing you to feel fuller, faster.
Step 2: Fill Half Your Plate with Fruits & Veggies
Have you ever heard the USDA's rule of thumb, “Fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables“? It's a great habit to develop, and one that will help you maintain a healthy weight throughout your lifetime.
One of the best things about summertime is the plethora of fresh fruits and vegetables available at the local farmers market. Plus, I don't know about you, but I'm a very visual person and fresh sliced fruit just looks so appetizing on a plate!
Did you know kiwi has more vitamin C than oranges? Plus, an entire kiwi only has about 55 calories!
One good way to make sure you fit more fruits and veggies into your diet is to keep a fresh fruit bowl on your kitchen counter. I also remove fruits from their grocery store baggies, wash them, remove any stickers, and arrange them (prettily) in the fruit drawer of my fridge. That way they call out to me when I open my refrigerator door in search of a snack!
One thing to note: Fruits are naturally high in carbs, so if you're watching your carbohydrate intake you may need to keep that in mind. However, if you have a sweet tooth and are trying to cut back on Oreos, ice cream, and chocolate chip cookies, you'll find that fresh fruit makes a great substitute! Swap out the artificially sweetened desserts that don't do anything positive for your health, and eat a bowl of fresh fruit instead.
Step 3: Eat Those Veggies First
If you're really focused on dropping weight and want to take things a step further, make sure you eat your veggies first. Veggies are typically fiber-rich, so they're more filling than fruit. They're also very low in calories, so you can eat a lot of vegetables and not gain weight.
The same nutritionist I referred to earlier also advised me to “eat the rainbow”, and that's a good rule of thumb when it comes to veggies. Try not to only consume greens, but instead make sure you eat a wide variety of flavorful veggie options.
Step 4: Always Include a Protein Source
My nutritionist advised me to always include a protein source with every meal — thats why you'll often see cashews or almonds in the center of my lunch plate. If you're not a vegetarian, you may want to try snacking on apple or cheese slices wrapped in low-fat turkey slices from the deli. (Request a low-sodium variety.)
If you prefer to get your protein through veggies, then edamame, peas, and broccoli are great sources. Finally, you can't go wrong with good old egg whites or greek yogurt as a protein source.
I hope these tips help! By filling up on water and nutrient-dense veggies at the beginning of your meal, you're less likely to have room for dessert by the end of your meal. (If you are still hungry at the end, try to satisfy your sweet tooth with fruits.)
Give these tips a try over the next few weeks and let me know what you think! Do you have any diet tips or tricks to share? If so, please let me know in the comments.