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Mar 13, 2011

Eating For Weight Loss - Three Principles

Every living creature does it.
Your life depends on it.
You do it over 1000 times a year.
It has an enormous impact on your weight, health and vitality.
You are the walking, talking, living, breathing product of what and how much you eat. What you put into your mouth matters. If you want to look and feel your best, you must follow three principles. These principles will guide you to making food choices that make you look and feel amazing.
The three principles are:
1) Eat in a way which supports your health.
2) Eat in a way which supports your weight goals.
3) Eat in a way which is sustainable.
Each of these components is absolutely necessary to creating the best you possible. Let's take a closer look at each principle.
1) Eat in a way which supports your health.
What you eat is what you is. It's true; the food we consume becomes us. You can't be healthier than the food you consume. If you consistently make unwholesome food choices (eating processed foods, eating excess sugar, too much fat, and too much meat) you will not experience the energy and vitality you desire and deserve. Your body will feel tired and your mind sluggish. Conversely, if you consistently make health supportive food choices you will feel vibrant and lively.
2) Eat in a way which supports your weight goals.
Depending on whether you need to lose weight, maintain your weight or gain weight the amount and kind food you put in your mouth should support your goals. This principle is all about calories. Regardless of your goal, to lose, maintain or gain weight it is all about calories. Imagine your goal is weight loss and you ate just ice cream. If you ate fewer calories than you needed you would lose weight but you would violate the first eating principle. Most everyone agrees a diet of nothing but ice cream isn't very healthy. Conversely, if your goal was to maintain your weight and you ate just green beans and consumed more calories than you needed you would gain weight. This wouldn't work well either because it would violate the third principle. Eating in a way which is sustainable.
3) Eat in a way which is sustainable.
By sustainable I mean something you can do for the rest of your life. A lifestyle, not a diet. If you cannot maintain the way you eat you cannot maintain your weight loss. There are two major reasons diets fail: people go off them and they eliminate foods they love. The "secret" of successful weight losers is that they stay on the "diet" for the rest of their lives. This requires finding a "diet", a way of eating, you are happy living with. A diet you are happy to live with means eating foods you love. Don't eliminate, reduce. If you tie your weight loss success to not eating foods you love you will almost certainly fail. The key is to eat the foods you love with your weight loss goals in mind. Each time you eat, you choose to support or sabotage your goals. Make food choices that support who you want to be.
What Should You Eat?
People always ask me, "What should I eat to lose weight?" They usually know the answer and I am sure you do to. More vegetables, fruit and whole grains and less fat, sugar, meat and dairy.
There are many popular weight loss diets, but according to the National Weight Loss Registry, people successful at losing and maintaining their weight eat about 60% of their calories from complex carbohydrates, 20% from protein and 20% fat. This means if you are eating 2000 calories a day, 1200 calories will come from carbohydrates, 400 calories will come from protein and 400 calories will come from fat.

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