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By Melinda Maryniuk, MEd, RD, CDCES

It’s easy to get discouraged when it comes to weight loss, but there’s good news. Here is a list of suggestions that have been shown in clinical studies to contribute to the success of those who’ve lost weight and kept it off. While there isn’t one thing that works equally well for everyone, review these ideas and focus on a few that you think might work best for you. And avoid making too many changes at once – look for changes you can make that you can stick to forever.

Choosing What We Eat…

Try the Plate Method Using a smaller (~9 inch) plate can help control portion sizes. Fill ½ the plate with fruits and veggies, ¼ with a whole grain or carbohydrate, and ¼ with a protein.  
Fill up on Fiber Use whole grains (versus refined, processed grains) as much as you can, and aim for 5 servings of fruits and veggies each day.   
Less Sugary Drinks Avoid drinking your calories – sugar-sweetened drinks like soda, coffee drinks, and fruity beverages. Drink water throughout the day to stay hydrated, or try seltzer & unsweetened teas.
Filling Breakfast By starting the day with a nutritious breakfast, you’ll actually be less likely to over-eat later in the day.
Quality Counts Focus more on choosing whole, unprocessed foods and less on counting every calorie or gram. Aim for 80-20, healthy choices 80% of the time… allowing room for treats.  
Plan Ahead The more you plan out what you eat, the less likely you are to over-eat at times of uncertainty. Consider having a meal replacement drink, snack bar, or frozen prepared meal on-hand in case you get hungry.

Seek Help

Talk with a dietitian!

If you need help with a personal meal plan, or helping work through challenges you face with healthy, balanced eating, a dietitian can help.

Join a support group.

Our Facebook group, Personal Health Revolution Weight Management, can help keep you motivated, share experiences with others, and more… join by clicking here.

Seek support.

Talk with your family members & friends about ways they can be helpful (and not nagging!). Have a buddy you can call if times get tough – or when you want to celebrate success!

Ask about weight loss medications.

There are new medications that can help you manage your weight available that may be helpful… Ask your doctor any may be right for you.

Think about bariatric (or metabolic) surgery.

Another thing to speak with your doctor about is whether bariatric surgery (such as gastric bypass or other weight-loss surgeries) might be an option for you.

Get Active!

Establish a routine. Aim for at least 150 minutes of activity a week. If you’re having trouble getting there, start small!
Walking works! Every day, inside or outside, walking is a great form of exercise. You can keep track of steps to motivate yourself, and try new locations to walk at!
Don’t resist resistance. Exercises that help you build and strengthen muscles are very beneficial. Try using resistance bands or light weights to start out!

Establish new behaviors and attitudes

Think lifestyle – not diet. Managing weight is usually a lifetime process. Don’t think about a “diet” – something you go on & off… but a healthy way of living!  
Eat mindfully. Learn how all foods can fit when you eat slowly, and without distraction.  
Avoid eating post-9 PM. Set your own limits and understand times of the day that you’re more likely to overeat. Aim for 3 meals a day, snacks if desired, and try to avoid eating after 9 PM at night.
Use a food journal! Keeping a food journal helps you identify your eating habits, and where you may want to focus more attention. Recording what you eat each day helps you be more aware of what and when you’re eating!
Set small goals. Small changes, done consistently over time, can yield big results. 
Regular weighing. Weigh yourself at the same time each day. Don’t get flustered by small day-to-day changes, but catch patterns before they become problems.


To find a physician near you who specializes in weight management, click here
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To sign up for our free online class that covers the basics of how to reach a healthier weight, click here.

Get the support you need!

Find a physician near you who specializes in weight management.