Tuesday, January 1, 2013

This one thing can help you lose weight, and keep it off!

A recent study from the Kaiser Permanente Ctr for Health Research, found that logging what you eat regularly can help you shed nearly two times more weight than if you don't keep a journal. If you are trying to lose weight and keep it off, something as mundane as recording what goes into your body can be a powerful tool to help!

There are a couple of reasons that food journaling works. First off, you might re-think what you are about to mindlessly eat. Do you REALLY want to write that you scarfed down a bag of M&M's for your 4pm snack? Another reason it works is because it can teach you how many calories are really in that starbucks latte with whip cream and chocolate drizzled over the top! Ignorance is not bliss when you are trying to keep track of calories you consume in a day.

Another reason it works is you can find out if you are not eating enough. I have had clients in the past that, after journaling their food, we find out that they are only taking in 800 calories a day....and 200 were from alcohol! The goal is to keep the metabolism running efficiently and burning those calories all day...not slowing to a crawl because it thinks you are in starvation mode. Here are a few ways to make food journaling work for you!
  • Track your normal eating for 2 weeks. This gives you a baseline. Also include the amount of water you are drinking.
  • I have several clients that track their food on their phone...there's an app for it! How easy and convenient..you don't even have to dig through the kitchen drawer for a pen!
  • Write (or type) down everything you eat, right away. You can look up the caloric content later, but get it down asap. OR if you don't have time to type it in - take a picture of your meal with your phone...and figure it out later!
  • Be 100% Honest. This is a no-brainer. It's not going to work if you skip this little detail
  • Learn Portion Control. Even though something is good for you - too much of anything is never good. Measure it if you aren't sure!
  • If you create a 500 calorie deficit each day, you will lose 1 lb per week! It's always been about calories in vs calories out...and always will be.
This year, make a resolution to track your food for the next 2 weeks. That's an attainable goal, and will help you stay on track!!

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