Are you feeling frustrated? Has your body hit a plateau? Losing weight takes the right nutrition, the correct workouts and a whole lot of mindset and change how you think about food and exercise.
Let’s look at some common mistakes you could be making and what to do instead
1. You are eating too many calories.
You can be eating all the right foods, but still be eating too much. When you eat in excess calories, your body will store them as fat. Calories in versus calories out is simple math. No matter what special diet you follow, it will always come down to your input versus your output. You can reduce your calories or increase your activity.
To reduce your calories, be sure to eat a diet based on whole foods, lean meats, fresh fruits and veggies and eat at home, as much as possible. Make sure to limit your unnecessary calories like sugary coffee drinks, alcohol and sweets.
2. You are not eating enough.
While eating too much may be obvious, the #1 thing I see is those who are not eating enough. You may think you can just not eat or eat less to lose weight. But this is not always the case. If you do not eat enough, your body will go into starvation mode and hold onto fat. If you are in this state for too long, you can damage your metabolism or worse. A slow metabolism burn less calories, which is a lose-lose situation.
Make sure you are eating 4-6 small meals a day, to keep your metabolism burning. The amount of calories you need depends on your height, weight and your activity level. Get a customized meal plan here, based on your health goals.
3. You need more protein.
The typical American diet is low in protein. Protein is needed to maintain your muscle mass and keeps you full for longer. Without proper levels of protein, your sugar levels are up and down and causes cravings, excessive hunger and binge eating.
You should be eating .5 grams of protein for every pound of lean muscle, as a minimum. Choose lean protein choices such as chicken, turkey or fish. For meatless options, opt for soy, dairy or legumes. A good protein or healthy meal shake can help you increase your protein amount.
4. You are drinking your calories.
You think that coffee drink or smoothie isn’t so bad, right? After all, smoothies are fruit and fruit is good. Your beverage of choice can cost you an extra 400-600 calories. That is like eating an extra meal. To put this into prospective, a non-active female should keep be consuming 1400-1800 calories; 600 calories is 1/3 of your allotted calories for the day. If weight loss is your goal, limit alcohol, sugary drinks, soda and juices.
Recommended beverages are water, herbal tea or black coffee. Make your starbucks and smoothie king beverages a treat, not a staple.
5. You are eating too much processed foods, not enough whole foods.
So you have your calories in check, you nixed the coffee habit. You cut back on alcohol, but you still are not losing. Check your grocery list. Processed foods includes anything that comes in the form of a box or bag of premade foods. These are convenience type foods and after 5 minutes in the microwave or on the stove top, you have dinner. These foods are packed full of chemicals, artificial sweeteners and sodium and will contribute to your growing waistline. While these may be convenient, they are not helping you get to your goal and it is best to avoid them as much as possible. After making the switch to more whole foods and cooking at home, you will not only feel better, you will have more energy and save money, too.
Stick to whole foods and foods with less than five ingredients.
6. You are eating out too much.
I know this is sounding like a broken record, but I need you to get this. You can be making smart choices when you eat out and still be consuming too many calories. A “healthy” meal, eaten at a local restaurant, is typically 200 extra calories more than if you made the same thing at home. I love eating out as much as the next person, however, if you find yourself eating out every day or most days of the week, start adding up your calories in a tracker so you can see it in black and white.
Keep eating out to minimum, aim for no more than two times a week. Try to see if you can create your favorite carryout meals, at home.
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If this was helpful, I’m sure you would love my 25 Power Meal Bundle. These are the 25 recipes that got me started to losing weight. They are high protein and low carb and will get you cooking healthy in the kitchen.