Don't eat this, stay away from that — following a diet can seem like a total killjoy. If you're feeling depressed about how restrictive your diet is, here are some proven weight-loss rules you'll welcome with open arms.
- Dig into a big breakfast: Skipping breakfast to save calories? That's a big mistake because eating breakfast actually jump-starts your metabolism. Your first meal of the day should include protein to reduce sugar cravings, and fiber to satiate your hunger. A veggie omelet, fruit smoothie with spinach, oatmeal with fruit and nuts, or Greek yogurt with fresh fruit are excellent choices.
- Say yes to carbs: Before you get too excited, know that I'm not talking about bagels. Simple carbs, made from enriched white flour, offer little nutritional value and more calories than you need. Stick to complex carbs like quinoa, brown rice, and oats, as well as foods made from whole grain flour such as pasta and crackers — of course, you still need to be mindful of portion sizes.) Complex carbs are not only full of fiber that keep hunger at bay, they also contain valuable vitamins and minerals your body needs such as vitamins B6 and E and iron.
Keep reading for four more weight-loss rules you'll love following.
- Eat between meals: No need to feel starved all day! Aside from your three main meals, schedule a morning and afternoon snack to keep hunger at bay. Stick to munching on snacks that are 150 calories or under, and use your two snacks to fill nutritional holes in your diet. Not sure what to eat? Check out these 150-calorie snack ideas.
- Set a time to indulge each day: Whether it's chocolate you long for or some crunchy, salty chips, choose a time each day where you can splurge on a little something you crave. Keep it under 50 calories and really take the time to savor it. Satisfying your edible desires is a great way to prevent breaking down and binging on huge portions of unhealthy foods later.
- Enjoy a meal out: Losing weight doesn't mean you have to give up eating at your favorite restaurants. Since portion sizes are usually enormous and dishes are also high in calories, bring a friend and split apps, entrées, and yes, even dessert. Here are even more tips on how to eat healthy at a restaurant.
- Have a glass of wine: If you're trying to lose weight, kicking back with an adult beverage may seem out of the question. While beer and cocktails aren't usually diet-friendly, one five-ounce glass of red wine is only about 100 calories. Since it's not a huge calorie-buster and red wine offers antioxidants, enjoy one small glass a few times a week.