We all face many temptations that compel us to eat more than we actually need, but there are a number of strategies you can adopt to overcome this and cut calories as a result.
The first step is to clear out all tempting foods. If you don’t have it in your house, you can’t eat it. So go through your kitchen cupboards, fridge and freezer and throw out all the high-fat, calorie-laden foods that would ruin your diet. If you feel bad about wasting food, give it to friends, neighbours or relatives that can make good use of it. However you get rid of it, putting unhealthy food in the bin is almost certainly going to be better for you than putting it in your mouth. If you want to keep treats like cookies or cakes in reserve for visitors or other family members, pick a special hiding-place which is awkward to access, and summon up all your will-power. An alternative is to make your own cakes healthier by adding wheat germ when baking by using it instead of a small amount of flour and try using wholemeal flour instead if your regular flour.
Next, tackle your snack attacks by buying smaller packs. This may not make good sense financially (as small packs cost more than large ones, per gram) but it can help you to lose weight. Studies have shown that people will eat less of something if it comes in a small pack. This is what is so risky about jumbo sized bags of crisps. Smaller packs give you more stopping points for you to decide whether you want to carry on eating. Plus, if you know your small snack costs more, you might be persuaded to be a bit more frugal with your snacks. Between meals, opt for fruit instead. If you pick a pear, apple, or a handful of strawberries, you’ll be getting 1.5g of fibre. Getting even that 1.5g of extra fibre a day (although a higher amount is better) is sufficient to reduce your risk of becoming overweight. One of the great things about fibre is that is fills you up without making you fat, because its calories are not absorbed by the body. In addition, fibre boosts the release of hormones into the bloodstream that send an “I’m full, enough already!” message to your brain.
At the very least, find lower-calorie alternatives to the foods you crave. This will help you lose pounds without feeling deprived and miserable, and happiness is the key to sticking to a healthy diet.