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15 Best Diet Tips Ever Experts share their top tips for weight loss success

By Kathleen M. Zelman, MPH, RD, LD

Everyone knows the keys to losing weight: Eat less and exercise more. Sounds simple enough, but in the context of real life and its demands, it can be anything but simple. So how do successful losers do it? To find out, WebMD asked experts across the country for their best diet tips.

Here's what they said:

Best Diet Tip No. 1: Drink plenty of water or other calorie-free beverages.

People sometimes confuse thirst with hunger. So you can end up eating extra calories when an ice-cold glass of water is really what you need. "If you don't like plain water, try adding citrus or a splash of juice, or brew infused teas like mango or peach, which have lots of flavor but no calories," says Cynthia Sass, RD, a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association.

Best Diet Tip No. 2: Think about what you can add to your diet, not what you should take away.

Start by focusing on getting the recommended 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. "It sounds like a lot, but it is well worth it, because at the same time you are meeting your fiber goals and feeling more satisfied from the volume of food," says chef Laura Pansiero, RD.

You're also less likely to overeat because fruits and vegetables displace fat in the diet. And that's not to mention the health benefits of fruits and vegetables. More than 200 studies have documented the disease-preventing qualities of phytochemicals found in produce, says Pansiero. Her suggestion for getting more: Work vegetables into meals instead of just serving them as sides on a plate. "I love to take seasonal vegetables and make stir-fries, frittatas, risotto, pilafs, soups, or layer on sandwiches," Pansiero says. "It is so easy to buy a variety of vegetables and incorporate them into dishes."

Best Diet Tip No. 3: Consider whether you're really hungry.
Whenever you feel like eating, look for physical signs of hunger, suggests Michelle May, MD, author of Am I Hungry? "Hunger is your body's way of telling you that you need fuel, so when a craving doesn't come from hunger, eating will never satisfy it," she says. When you're done eating, you should feel better -- not stuffed, bloated, or tired. "Your stomach is only the size of your fist, so it takes just a handful of food to fill it comfortably," says May. Keeping your portions reasonable will help you get more in touch with your feelings of hunger and fullness.

Best Diet Tip No. 4: Be choosy about nighttime snacks.
Mindless eating occurs most frequently after dinner, when you finally sit down and relax. "Sitting down with a bag of chips or cookies in front of the television is an example of eating amnesia, where you mindlessly eat without being hungry, but out of habit," says American Dietetic Association spokesperson Malena Perdomo, RD. Either close down the kitchen after a certain hour, or allow yourself a low-calorie snack, like a 100-calorie pack of cookies or a half-cup scoop of low-fat ice cream. Once you find that you're usually satisfied with the low-cal snack, try a cup of zero-calorie tea, suggests Perdomo.

Best Diet Tip No. 5: Enjoy your favorite foods.
"I think putting your favorite foods off limits leads to weight gain because it triggers 'rebound' overeating," says Sass. Instead of cutting out your favorite foods altogether, be a slim shopper. Buy one fresh bakery cookie instead of a box, or a small portion of candy from the bulk bins instead of a whole bag. "You can enjoy your favorite foods, but you must do so in moderation," says Sass.

Best Diet Tip No. 6: Enjoy your treats away from home.
When you need a treat, Ellie Krieger, RD, host of Food Network's Healthy Appetite, suggests taking a walk to your local ice cream parlor or planning a family outing.

"By making it into an adventure, you don't have to worry about the temptation of having treats in the house, and it is a fun and pleasurable way to make it work when you are trying to lose weight," says Krieger. And for those times you just can't get out? Krieger stocks her kitchen with fresh fruit, which she thinks can be every bit as delicious as any other dessert.

Best Diet Tip No. 7: Eat several mini-meals during the day.
If you eat fewer calories than you burn, you will lose weight. But when you're hungry all the time, eating fewer calories can be challenging. "Studies show people who eat 4-5 meals or snacks per day are better able to control their appetite and weight," says obesity researcher Rebecca Reeves, DrPH, RD. She recommends dividing your daily calories into smaller meals or snacks and enjoying as many of them as you can early in the day -- dinner should be the last time you eat.

Best Diet Tip No. 8: Eat protein at every meal.
Protein is more satisfying than carbohydrates or fats, and thus may be the new secret weapon in weight control. "Diets higher in protein [and] moderate in carbs, along with a lifestyle of regular exercise, have an excellent potential to help weight loss," says University of Illinois protein researcher Donald Layman, PhD. Getting enough protein helps preserve muscle mass and encourages fat burning while keeping you feeling full. So be sure to include healthy protein sources, like yogurt, cheese, nuts, or beans, at meals and snacks.


Best Diet Tip No. 9: Spice it up.
Add spices or chilies to your food for a flavor boost that can help you feel satisfied. "Food that is loaded with flavor will stimulate your taste buds and be more satisfying so you won't eat as much," says Perdomo. When you need something sweet, suck on a red-hot fireball candy for a long lasting burst of sweetness with just a few calories.

Best Diet Tip No. 10: Stock your kitchen with healthy convenience foods.
Having ready-to-eat snacks and meals-in-minutes staples on hand sets you up for success. You'll be less likely to hit the drive-through or call in a pizza order if you can make a healthy meal in 5 or 10 minutes. Sass stocks her kitchen with:

  • 94% fat-free microwave popcorn (20-25 calories per cup, and you can make it in two minutes or less)
  • Frozen vegetables
  • Bags of pre-washed greens
  • Canned diced tomatoes
  • Canned beans
  • Whole-grain wraps or pitas
  • Pre-cooked grilled chicken breasts
  • A few containers of pre-cooked brown rice

Within minutes, she can toss together a healthy medley.

Best Diet Tip No. 11: Order children’s portions at restaurants.
"When you are eating out, order a child's pizza or a small sandwich as an easy way to trim calories and get your portions under control," suggest Perdomo. Another trick is to use smaller plates. This helps the portions look like more, and if your mind is satisfied, your stomach likely will be, too.

Best Diet Tip No. 12: Eat foods in season.
"If you don't love certain fruits or vegetables, it could be because you ate them out of season when they have little taste or flavor," says Pensiero. "When you eat seasonally, fruits and vegetables are more flavorful, at their best, and I promise you won't be disappointed." At GiGi's Trattoria, her restaurant in Rhinebeck, N.Y., she serves simple fruit desserts, like naturally sweet strawberries topped with aged balsamic vinegar, or low-fat yogurt or fresh berries in a compote.

Best Diet Tip No. 13: Swap a cup of pasta for a cup of vegetables.
Simply by eating less pasta or bread and more veggies, you could lose a dress or pants size in a year. "You can save from 100-200 calories if you reduce the portion of starch on your plate and increase the amount of vegetables," says Sass.

Best Diet Tip No. 14: Use non-food alternatives to cope with stress.
Sooner or later, you're going to be faced with a stressful situation. Instead of turning to food for comfort, be prepared with some non-food tactics that work for you.

Sass suggests reading a few chapters in a novel, listening to music, writing in a journal, practicing meditative deep breathing, or looking at a photo album of loved ones.

Best Diet Tip No. 15: Be physically active.
Although it may seem counterintuitive, don't use exercise either to punish yourself for eating or to "earn" the right to eat more. "When you do, it sets up a negative thought pattern, which is why so many people say they hate to exercise," says May. Instead, focus on how great you feel, how much better you sleep and how much more energy you have when you exercise. Physical activity is good for you whether you are trying to lose weight or not, so keep it positive and build a lifelong habit.

Get Skinny - Raw Generation


Introduction to Healthy Eating

By Vlad Alyokhin  | Submitted On November 19, 2017

Take a minute to imagine your ideal body in a perfect state of health. How would you look in the mirror? How would you feel when you get out of bed in the morning? If you want to make that vision a reality, you'll have to start eating more healthy foods. One of the most important steps towards prioritizing health & fitness in your everyday routine is being aware of what you're putting in your body.

Benefits of Healthy Eating
You might have heard that losing weight comes from 80% diet and 20% fitness. That's because it's much easier to reduce calories through eating well than it is by exercising and burning off the extra calories from unhealthy food. Even if you are diligently following a workout plan, if you aren't eating well you may not see much progress.

There are so many benefits of healthy eating including preventing illness, feeling great, looking great, increasing strength, and having lots of energy all day long.

The 3 Building Blocks: Protein, Carbs, and Fats

Your body uses protein to build tissue such as muscle and it can also use protein as an energy source. Protein assists in muscle growth and recovery which is essential to recover after your intense workouts.

It's pretty hard for your body to turn protein into fat, so if you want to lose fat increase the proportion of protein you consume as part of your diet. If you want to lose weight and gain strength, aim for a high protein diet and simultaneously minimize your carbohydrate intake.

10 Best Sources of Protein
Protein Powder - 80-90 g protein/100g 
Lean Beef - 36 g protein/100g 
Pork Loin - 32 g protein/100g 
Chicken - 31g protein/100g 
Tuna - 26 g protein/100g 
Lentils - 26 g protein/100g 
Almonds - 21 g protein/100g 
Black Beans - 21 g protein/100g 
Eggs - 13 g protein/100g 
Cottage Cheese 11 g protein/100g - Fresh Meals Delivered!

Daily, aim for 0.8-1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. Protein has 4 calories per gram. Note that while protein powder is an excellent source of protein, you shouldn't rely on it alone. You want to ensure that you're getting plenty of protein from whole foods as well, which come packed with a host of vitamins, nutrients, and minerals that are essential for good health.

There are three main types of carbohydrate: sugars, starches and fiber. Sugar and starches get broken down to produce energy and fiber can feed the bacteria in the digestive system.

Some carbohydrates are better for you than others. Simple or refined carbohydrates have been processed so the fiber is removed. Examples include white sugar, white bread, and fruit juice. Your body processes these refined carbohydrates quickly, which increases your blood glucose levels and spikes insulin. This insulin spike can be useful for muscle growth and recovery after a workout but during the rest of the day focus on eating more complex carbohydrates instead.

Whole or complex carbohydrates take longer to digest so they provide a steadier supply of energy. They also contain many nutrients. These are the carbs that you want to focus on, and only eat others sparingly.

6 Best Sources of Carbs
Brown rice 
Whole fruits (e.g. berries, applies, oranges) 

Aim for about 1 gram of carbohydrates per pound of bodyweight daily. Carbohydrates contain 4 calories per gram.

Some people are scared of fats because they are calorie dense (9 calories per gram) but your body needs fat to thrive. Fat is a source of energy and it also helps your body absorb some vitamins and minerals. Fat is used to build cell membranes, clot blood, move muscles and prevent inflammation.

It's important to check your food labels-some types of fats are better for you than others.

Polyunsaturated Fats - Good

These are essential fats because your body needs them and it can't produce them on its own. Sunflower oil and safflower oil contain polyunsaturated fats. Omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are examples of polyunsaturated fats. Many people get enough omega-6 in their diet so focus on omega-3 fatty acids which you can get from foods such as salmon, sardines, and walnuts.

Monounsaturated Fats - Good

These function as an energy source during tough workouts. Olive oil, avocados and peanut butter are good sources of monounsaturated fats.

Saturated Fats - Okay in Moderation

Your diet should include some saturated fat, especially if you are a following an intense workout plan. Saturated fat is especially important for men because it helps maintain healthy testosterone levels. Whole eggs, red meat, whole milk and coconut oil are sources of saturated fat.

Trans fats - Bad

Avoid these fats at all costs! Trans fats have been altered in a laboratory and your body doesn't recognize them or know what to do with them, which can cause problems. They might even increase the risk of heart disease, certain cancers and memory impairment. If you see any ingredient that is hydrogenated, the food contains trans fats. Don't put it in your body!
6 Best Sources of Fat
Olive oil 
Coconut oil 
Red meat

Aim for 0.5 grams of fat per pound daily, with a mix of mostly unsaturated and some saturated fats. Fats have 9 calories per gram.

Key Things to Avoid

Here are three key items to avoid, or if you can't cut them out completely, try hard to reduce your intake.

Alcohol is basically empty calories with no nutritional value. It tends to stimulate the appetite and many foods you would typically eat while drinking are full of fat and salt. Alcohol decreases testosterone and lowers your metabolic rate so that means that you will have trouble burning fat, and probably pack on more than you'd like. They call it a "beer belly" for a reason!

Trans fats 
We covered this above in the fats section. Just avoid these! They have no nutritional value and are bad for your health.

Refined sugar 
Sugar is full of empty calories and if you want to lose weight, cut out sugar! It's bad for your hormones, can lead to obesity or cancer, and is also addictive. Some studies say that sugar addiction should be treated like drug abuse. Stay away from soft drinks and fruit juices that are loaded with sugar and be aware that some sport drinks also contain a lot of sugar, so keep these for post-workout consumption only.

Putting it All Together: The Complete Diet

There is no one-size-fits-all program, but we suggest a higher protein, lower carb diet to drop body fat, increase strength, and sculpt your body. Make sure that the carbs that you eat are mostly complex carbs. Eating the right types of food is more important than counting calories. If you want to lose weight, you need to consume fewer calories than you take in but don't go too far or your body may decide you are starving and pack on fat.

Everyone has different nutritional needs based on their metabolism, level of physical fitness, body type and size. Here's a link to a calculator that you can use as a rough guide to determine how many calories you should aim for per day. It takes your gender, age, weight, height, and activity level into account.

As we mentioned above, a good guide is the following:

Protein: 0.8-1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight
Carbs: 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight
Fats: 0.5 grams of fat per pound of bodyweight

So if you weigh 150 pounds, you'd eat 120-150 grams of protein, 150 grams of carbs, and 75 grams of fats everyday, which would give you about 1,755 calories. This is a good starting point if you're trying to burn fat and lose weight. But don't starve yourself! If you find you're constantly hungry and have low energy levels-be sure to eat a bit more. It will take a while to find the right fit for you as you adjust your eating and physical activity levels.

If you aren't sure how many calories you are eating on a daily basis, using an app like MyFitnessPal or Lose It! can help you keep track. Both apps have free versions.

What Else Can I Do?

If you want to boost your results from your workout, why not try some supplements? Here are six to consider.
Protein Powder - the easiest solution to boost your protein intake 
Caffeine - helps you push harder during your workout and boost your metabolism to burn more fat 
Creatine - scientifically proven to increase muscle strength and size 
Fish oil - improves physical performance and helps you maintain healthy joints 
Multivitamin - ensures you're getting all the nutrients you need to fully reach your potential 
Veggie Greens Powder - a healthy mix of nutrients to help boost your energy

It takes a while to make healthy eating a habit but the rewards are huge so it is a worthwhile investment. If you found this whole article overwhelming, try making one small change at a time. First you can cut out unhealthy foods, such as sodas, candy, and fried foods and then focus on replacing them (one at a time if you have to) with healthier foods. It's taken you a long time to develop your current eating habits so be patient as it will take time to develop new ones. Just keep making small improvements and you will eventually reach your end goal.

A treat from time to time isn't a problem but if you find yourself reverting to eating a lot of foods that aren't good for you, don't beat yourself up over it. Just move on as if nothing happened and try to do better next time. Every day you have the opportunity to choose what goes into your body-so every day you can choose to make the right nutrition choices. If you want the best results from your workouts, make healthy eating a priority. You won't regret it!