Eat All the Foods You Love and Still Lose the Weight

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Many fad diet products and programs entice you to try them with claims like: "Eat all the foods you love and still lose the weight". Phrases such as this one thrill hopeful dieters, and cause skeptics to roll their eyes. If you take this claim to mean you may eat an entire pizza at every meal and not gain weight, you will be disappointed.

If approached in the correct way, this statement is true. It says you may eat all the foods you love, not all the food you want. The key to successful weight loss is being able to adhere to a limited calorie diet and getting enough physical exercise.

The Secret of How to Eat All the Foods You Love and Still Lose the Weight

Two little words are the Holy Grail to weight loss success: Portion Control. These words are easy to say, and often difficult to do. You can help yourself control the amount of food you eat by following a few of these tips:

  • Read the labels on food packages and find out what a serving size is
  • Measure food portions until you can "eyeball" them
  • Avoid buffets and invites to "All you can eat" restaurants
  • Buy single serving packaged foods, many companies are now making packages that contain 100 calorie servings.
  • Avoid fast food. If you are going to eat it, do not buy combos or larger sized portions even if it seems to make economic sense.
  • Eat salads before meals
  • Store leftovers in single serving containers
  • Eat 5 or 6 small meals per day to keep yourself from becoming too hungry
  • Eat delicious foods you love, only half as much as you normally would
  • Use smaller plates

Daily Caloric Intake

One of the most important factors for weight loss is taking in fewer calories than you burn on a daily basis. How much you eat is as important as what you eat.

A basic guideline is to eat 500 fewer calories less than you need to maintain your current weight. If you take in 500 fewer calories per day, you will lose weight. For example, a moderately active, 35 year old woman that is five feet six inches tall, and weighs 150 pounds requires 2,146 calories per day to maintain her weight. If she wanted to lose weight, she would need to reduce her caloric intake to 1,646 calories per day.

Online caloric intake calculators make a handy tool that allows you to figure out how many calories you should be consuming each day.

Keep Track of Your Caloric Intake

Being aware of your caloric intake will assist you in losing weight while eating foods you enjoy. You can take a notepad in your purse for meals on the go, and log into any one of the online calorie journal programs available to calculate your caloric intake. The programs often help calculate how many calories you burn during a particular type of exercise and can chart your percentage of fat to carbohydrate intake as well. The most important thing about keeping a diary of the foods you eat is to make yourself aware of how much you eat.

Adequate Exercise

A regular exercise routine burns extra calories in addition to those used for daily living. Getting at least one half hour of vigorous exercise 3 or 4 days per week is crucial to being able to eat all the foods you love and still lose the weight.

Just like finding a diet that you will stick to, you need to select activities you enjoy to get exercise. If you do not like to run, it is not likely that you will do it for several hours per week. There are many different types of exercise, and it is often a good idea to pick a variety of activities. Many of the most popular exercise activities burn quite a few calories Some examples given here demonstrate how many calories can be burned doing various activities.

Number of Calories Burned During Activity
1 Hour Activity Person of 130 lbs Person of 155 lbs Person of 190 lbs.
Low Impact Aerobics 295 352 431
Riding Bicycle 10-12 mph 354 422 518
Dancing 266 317 388
Gardening 295 352 431
Walking dog 207 246 302
Leisure Swimming 354 422 518
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Eat All the Foods You Love and Still Lose the Weight