A major part of the weight loss that I have accomplished comes from streamlining my diet. As a rather social person with a passion for food, this poses problems. Here are a few ideas that worked for me.
1) Switch from Glutton to Foodie
Most people who call themselves ‘foodies’ are barely so. In my opinion, (and yes, I have been guilty of this) they’re just trying to cloak their gluttony in a veil of respectability. As a ‘foodie’, instead of stuffing your face, try to enjoy food for its presentation, aroma, taste and texture. Take your time over a small serving and truly enjoy it.
2) Social Calories vs Diet Calories
Having to stick to a serious diet while dining out a few times a week is difficult. A drastic change in diet can make even long time companions uncomfortable and could ultimately alienate them. So while my diet generally was quite austere, consisting mostly of fruits and minimally processed stuff (diet calories) inspired in part by Dian and Tom Greisel’s ‘Turbocharged’, on evenings out, I wouldn’t sweat the odd bite of dessert or pint of beer (social calories).
3) Watch your alcohol
I love my weekend tipple. There is nothing better I like to do on a Friday night than settle down with a beer and a nice movie. Unfortunately, with my tendency to occasionally go overboard, this Friday activity has often set the scene for overeating all weekend. On weekends that I have abstained, my hunger levels, and indeed calorie intake, has been much lesser than ones where I have been drinking. This has led me to believe that perhaps the no.1 enemy of your healthy diet is alcohol.
I have moved all my alcohol intake to social calories now, and am trying very hard to stick by it. Indeed, the results are obvious almost immediately.
4) Get back on the wagon
It is very likely that in the first few weeks you will slip up a number of times. The important thing here is not to feel guilty and ‘get back on the diet from tomorrow’ – you’re just extending the damage. Once you’ve realised it, stop immediately and get back on the diet from the very next meal. Indeed you’re not defeated by the number of times you fall, but by failing to get up!
These are some of the books that I found very useful in managing my diet:
1) Turbocharged by Dian and Tom Greisel http://turbocharged.us.com/
2) French Women Don’t Get Fat by Mireille Guiliano http://mireilleguiliano.com/section/sub/14