Dieting has earned quite a bad rap due to all the fads and trends that have arisen in recent years, mostly in the form of a quick fix and a shortcut to long-term health issues such as blood pressure, weight management, or certain food intolerances and allergies. Such serious matters that ultimately define the quality of your life deserve to be treated as long-term goals rather than momentary eating changes – which becomes an issue for most.
Sticking to your health goals, your diet included, can be problematic no matter how aware you might be of your need to stay true to your goals. Here are a few ways you can build up your willpower and create a system that will help you stay consistent with your eating habits and establish a healthy life for yourself.
Set Your Goals
Structure is vital in sticking to a diet you have chosen, no matter what it may be. In order to create structure to begin with, you need to have clear goals, all set based on your current health and weight management needs, and your capabilities to stick to them. For starters, you should consult a BMI chart in order to get a rough idea of whether your goals should be structured around weight gain, loss, or maintenance.
Since there are no clear-cut templates for all of us, remember that numbers are only one piece of your dietary puzzle. Check with your doctor if you have any blood pressure issues, cholesterol, nutrition deficiencies, and if your lifestyle requires you to tweak your eating habits differently.
Focus on Your Motivation
What has gotten you on this dieting journey to begin with? Was it the doctor’s orders, your desire to prevent diabetes, heart disease or anything remotely severe, or was it your desire to be a better role model for your kids? The next time you find yourself battling with a need to munch on sweets, ask yourself will it be worth it setting yourself back from your original goal.
If it will help, set up images around you, motivational posters, words of wisdom from your own family, and other forms of encouragement that will help you muscle through all those potential binge sessions. Let your future life be your guiding star to help you avoid as many setbacks as you can and stay motivated even on those rare occasions you might slip up.
Keep Track of Your Milestones
At a certain point in time, every single diet should become a way of life, that is, a part of your healthy habits that you form over time. Until that day comes, you need to see and feel the results of your efforts in order to stay on the right track.
If your BMI chart has shown you an approximate goal of how much weight you need to lose, and you have a set of specific steps such as food lists, caloric intake, and a fitness program to follow through, you should keep track of all those efforts to see their results.
Whether you use an app, write down your achievements, or you rely on a combination of several different methods, tracking your progress should be one of the main techniques to get a firm grip of your dieting goals.
Control Your Environment
Most of the setbacks we encounter on our way to better eating come from our own kitchen. After all, we are the ones who have enabled unhealthy eating in the first place, starting from snacks, sweets, and frequent indulgences. For any diet to take effect, you need to create an environment that will help you stay true to your goals.
Start by emptying those kitchen counters of any unhealthy snacks, and you can always replace them with fresh fruits, nuts, seeds, and other alternatives more suitable for your new diet regime. This will help you reduce any temptation around you and build up your resilience for all those birthday parties when you’re going to need to say no to an extra piece of cake.
Finally, dieting shouldn’t be a chore and yet another dull obligation. In fact, healthy eating as a habit should be a vital part of your lifestyle, and one that you’ll genuinely look forward to. To make sure you build a positive attitude and a happiness-based approach to healthy eating, treat yourself every now and then with something healthy and positive.
It can be a weekend trip with your spouse, a solo getaway to a city nearby, a massage, a new pair of jeans, or a dinner out with your best friends. As long as it further encourages healthy habits and makes you happy – you can make it a part of your reward system.
Dieting, which should be appropriately called healthy eating, should be a natural part of your life. Use these simple, but effective tips to make this one habit an integral part of your life that will revolve around health and wellbeing at all times!