It’s bathing suit season again, so I thought it might be a good idea to review my top 10 no-diet weight loss tips. I don’t believe in diets. Sure, I’ve done them to stay model thin, and I’ve lost tons of weight on them, but the problem is the weight comes back as soon as you resume your old habits.
To succeed longterm you need to be realistic about what a healthy weight is for your body, then you need new habits – longterm healthier lifestyle changes. Instead of thinking diet (which is synonymous in my mind with deprivation), think healthier choices and make them yummy.
1). Try to cut out all processed, fatty, sugary food and stick to home cooked meals using a modicum of healthy fats. There are so many hidden sugars, preservatives, and even more ominous chemicals and production methods that go into packaged convenience foods. With a little effort on the weekend, the Personal Chef Approach can help you make healthier home cooked meals just as convenient.
2). Don’t be afraid to alter recipes. When it comes to the battle of the bulge, it helps to substitute healthy fats for less healthy ones when cooking, and use a smaller portion of them. Most recipes will work fine with 1 teaspoon of olive oil instead of 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil, but as a PCA member, you’ll have access to the chef who wrote them (me) and a whole community for advice and support in the forum.
Herb Crusted Salmon with Green Beans
3). Supersize your fresh vegetables, but exercise correct portion control over protein and complex carbs.
Vegetables are high in nutrients and fiber, but low in calories. That means you’ll get nourishment that your body needs while staying full longer. Bland steamed vegetables can get boring, so I have a huge array of recipes
to make them more interesting in the recipe library – just click on sides. Clients constantly comment on how they thought they disliked a certain vegetable until they tried a different preparation, plus having variety makes it easier stick to a longterm lifestyle adjustment.
4). Know what a proper portion of meat, poultry, or seafood looks like (usually 4-6 ounces depending on your size). If you despise weighing food, a general rule of thumb is no bigger than the palm (without fingers) of your hand.
5). Whenever possible, buy hormone and anti-biotic free, organically fed meat and poultry. I’m suspicious of the growth hormones they give to our livestock purely so they can increase their bottom line, also may be increasing our waistlines.
6). Choose your complex carbs wisely. You already know that brown rice is better for you than white, but there are also many whole grains that have become immensely popular these days. Try quinoa or amaranth for a change. Choose sweet potatoes over white (they have more fiber), and stick to whole grain (not just whole wheat) bread.
7). When shopping try to shop to the perimeter of the store
– the center aisles are where the prepackaged, heavily processed foods lurk. Sometimes we need canned or bottled goods to cook with, so shop wisely and read the labels
to make the healthiest choice
8). Eat fresh fruit to satisfy your sugar cravings. Not only are you getting vitamins and nutrients you wouldn’t get from a piece of chocolate cake, our bodies can process natural sugars much more efficiently than processed ones. Remember, you want to eat food, not chemicals!
9). EXERCISE! Like it or not, weight loss is not just about the food you eat – it’s equally important to burn what you consume. I try to walk 2 miles a day, and I like to do Pilates twice a week. The older you get, the more muscle your body can lose over time, and that means fewer calories burned – so exercise is vital as we age (both aerobic and strength building).
Make a healthier lifestyle habit
10). Know the Personal Chef Approach has you covered. Even our best intentions run amuck when the other demands on our time make it difficult to think about planning, shopping, and preparing a healthy dinner every night. Waiting until you are starving hungry to figure it all out makes the fast food fix perilously tempting. You save time making just one organized trip to the store, cook your meals simultaneously (getting the pots and pans out of the way in advance) in a few hours on the weekend, then just heat to eat delicious, healthy meals in minutes the rest of the week. Be sure to keep your fridge well stocked with fruit, vegetables, and any other healthy snacks you might want to grab on the run to help ensure your weight-loss success too.
Habits (especially healthy ones) take a little time to form, usually 3-4 weeks. Give your tastebuds time to acclimate, and you’ll begin to feel healthier. When/if you do stray, you’ll feel the difference and want to get back on track much faster.
Sesame Sauteed Beet Greens
I eat a lot of beets, and I love this recipe because it means none of it goes to waste. The beet greens can be eaten raw, boiled, steamed, or sauteed. They taste like a cross between spinach and kale, and it is a great source of both vitamins A and K. It also adds lovely color to any dish, and can hold it’s own with strong flavors. This recipe adds a hint of Asian flavors, and pairs well with Marinated Salmon seared in a Black Peppercorn Crust.
- 1 Tablespoon canola oil
- 1 bunch of beets greens (saving beets for another use), large stems removed
- 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger root, minced
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- toasted sesame seeds for garnish, optional
1). Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger, cook for 30 seconds.
2). Add greens, and toss to coat. Cover pan, and continue to cook, tossing occasionally, until just wilted, about 3-4 minutes.
3). Remove from heat. Add soy sauce, toss well, and serve hot sprinkled with toasted seeds to garnish.
Serving Suggestions: I’m serving this topped with salmon for Valentines Day, but it would also be great with ham, lamb, and beef.