4 Traits of a Successful Dieter
A good friend of mine is fond of saying all diets work, no diets work. If she weren’t a respected nutritionist, diet researcher and author, I may have written her off a long time ago.
What she is saying is any weight loss program or plan that cuts calories, food groups, etc. is likely to move the scale needle while you follow the rules. However, once the dieter returns to his or her traditional ways of eating – the ways that led to the weight gain – well, they will invariably pile back on the pounds.
Okay, so what’s the secret to lasting weight loss? Consume fewer calories, burn more calories and choose an eating plan you can sustain for life.
It helps if you possess these traits:
- You eat more veggies
Researchers have found we aren’t eating our vegetables. In fact, only 1 in 10 Americans meet the recommendations. Vegetables fill you up, provide very few calories, and provide the nutrients needed to fight heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and some cancers.
Not a fan of veggies? Start slow and introduce more of your favorites to start, then get daring and add new selections into your meals. There are so many choices you are bound to find a bushel of new flavors and textures to love.
- You eat less sugar
We come into this world with a sweet tooth – even before we have teeth! A spoonful of sugar not only makes the medicine go down, but also flavors up many of our favorite foods. It also fattens us up, so it’s important that we rein in our consumption of the sweet stuff.
Food researchers have found we Americans consume more than 19 teaspoons of sugar per day. The American Heart Association, meanwhile, wants woman to limit themselves to 6 teaspoons a day and men to 9.
Just be careful. There are many names for added sugars. A few popular ones include agave, cane juice, maple syrup, brown rice syrup, fruit juice concentrate and date sugar. Read labels – and know what to watch for!
- You eat more whole foods
There’s no argument among the food experts: Overly processed foods are linked to weight gain. The reason may be open to debate, however there’s a good chance it has to do with a lack of fiber. Fiber leaves us feeling more full and satisfied. Choosing whole foods is a great way to get more fiber.
Not quite sure what qualifies as a whole food? The list includes fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds, whole grains, eggs, seafood and chicken. Select the ones you love but don’t turn your nose up at others. After all, variety is the spice of life – and this especially holds true while dieting.
- You plan ahead
Knowing what you are going to eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner and between-meal snacks goes a long way toward easing your stress and putting good foods into your body. We know that many of you are super-busy and cringe at the thought of planning out meals, shopping for foods and cooking. That’s why we have acquired one of the best meal planning programs available anywhere.
The MealPlanMap.com recipe engine removes the guesswork, allows you to input your food likes – and dislikes – and offers up your weekly shopping list that you can access on your smartphone while at the market.
The only thing we don’t do is cook your meals.
We also know that sometimes you simply have to dine at a restaurant. No worries. We got that covered too. Our database will provide healthy, tasty suggestions that will keep you on track.
Personal traits of successful dieters
Yet another study has found that those who have succeeded at weight loss tend to display certain behavioral traits. They’re motivated, confident, conscientious, have a positive body image, keep track of progress and do everything in moderation.
You don’t need to have all these traits to lose weight and keep it off. Actually, all you need is a sensible diet that you can sustain.
Hmmm … sounds a lot like what we offer here at Meal Plan Map!
John McGran has been writing about health and weight loss for several national companies since 2000. He brings his knowledge of diets — and his passion for dropping pounds — to Meal Plan Map because he believes it is the future of smart, stress-free eating and improved health.