It’s likely that you’ve been on a diet at one point in your life. And everyone can easily name a few friends or family members who’ve been on one. Did you succeed? Did they? Or did you find yourself right back where you started? If you can answer yes to any of these questions, then you’ve likely made one or some of the most common dieting mistakes.
1. Have you ever followed a crash or fad diet? These are the ones that promise unrealistic weight loss, like 10 pounds in a week, or have you consume terribly low calories, like >1000 each day.
2. Skipped breakfast to stay on schedule? You can get where you need to be sooner and you’ll save yourself a few hundred calories, that’s what you’re telling yourself. However, breakfast really is the most important meal of the day and you should make the time to eat it.
3. Mindlessly snack and forget the calories? A nibble here and a handful here can quickly add up to hundreds of extra calories a day – which turn into extra pounds.
4. Avoid snacks altogether? There is a happy medium. Scheduled snacks with healthy and low-calorie options keep your metabolism going throughout the day and fend-off hunger pangs.
5. Love low-fat food choices? To cut the fat from packaged foods, they had to save the flavor by adding sugar, sodium or other preservatives. Read the nutrition label and remember low-calorie.
6. Drinking too many calories? Soft drinks, juices, cocktails and lattes are all full of calories, and empty calories at that. Drink water (vitamin waters have calories, too) and get your calories from more satiating sources.
7. Staying hydrated a task? You need water. And lots of it. It fuels body processes, clears skin, gives energy and a host of other positives.
8. Not getting enough dairy in your diet? Calcium can help your body burn fat, and there are plenty of low- and non-fat dairy products perfect for snacking and meal time. Think yogurt, cheese sticks or a glass of skim milk.
9. Know the fast-food menu by heart? These meals-on-the-go are full of sodium, trans fat, calories and other food additives that a healthy body just doesn’t need. Not to mention oversized portions and the price tag. Plan meals ahead of time to avoid the drive-thru.
10. Stepping on the scale part of your daily routine? One to two pounds of weight loss weekly is a healthy rate. You’re giving yourself undue stress with daily weigh-ins. Also, keep an eye on waist inches as an indication of weight loss.
11. Setting goals that are tough to reach? Set small, attainable goals and as you reach each milestone, you’ll find you’re gradually moving toward that bigger goal.
12. Not finding time for the gym? It’s as simple as calories in, calories out. A combination of a healthy diet and then at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week will yield positive results.
See more about this list from WebMD.
February 4th, 2009