Unlike me who often throws myself into things cold turkey, many people find that way too confronting and want to know how to ease into a new diet program with a little more grace and alot less withdrawals, headaches, food cravings and so forth.
If your diet has been filled with a whole range of funky things like pizzas, burger buns, twinkies, cookies and candy, then changing to a ‘real food’ diet and lifestyle can take a bit of getting used to.
So here’s are 5 tips to kick start a diet so that you can stick it out the whole way.
5 Tips To Kick Start A Diet
1. Start from where YOU are
Don’t worry about anyone else, things you read on facebook, why it’s not working for you etc. Just start from where YOU are and ease yourself into your new diet routine in your own time.
Stop obsessing over how much weight you can lose, getting it all right, time management, meals, cooking, organising, food, eating out…ahhhh…so much to think about it’s overwhelming! Just realise where you’re at and work on it one step at a time.
Let go of expectations and take this ‘real food thing’ on as a long-term journey and a process of discovery.
Getting back to ‘real food’ and the fundamentals of cooking and nutrition is the best way to claiming back your weight and your health and happiness. It doesn’t happen overnight so have patience and enjoy the journey 🙂
2. Start with cutting out or cutting down the processed and packaged foods and snacks
A great place to start…if it comes in a packet, ask yourself if you really need it.
Yes you want it BUT do you really need it?
Chances are the answer is no.
So start looking at what’s going in your mouth and replace your common processed foods with something healthier. If your diet is really bad, start with just one thing and give yourself a week or two to make this first adjustment, then move onto changing the next thing.
Small progressive steps tend to work better than trying to change everything all at once.
3. Next cut out or cut down on the sugar
Cutting out the processed stuff will drastically cut down your sugar content as well.
But sugar does tend to be a tough challenge for most people so your next focus is to cut down or cut out the sugar.
Give yourself another couple of weeks or so to make this transition, and if you need some tips to help reduce sugar cravings. Click here to listen to some great tips.
4. Change one meal at a time
I’m going to emphasise this again, but don’t try to overload yourself with changing everything at once, instead try to change one meal at a time.
Just start with breakfast and then once you have a good routine and a few meal options for breakfast, move onto lunch, then dinner, then snacks. It’s better to do it slowly and develop a long term habit that you can maintain.
5. Start planning ahead
Eating a ‘real food’ diet means you have to plan, otherwise you plan to fail!
There’s no way around this, so you need to learn to think ahead and plan. Eating real food does make it a bit more difficult to grab foods in a hurry and if you’re busy or stressed you don’t want to reach for the naughties so meal planning is essential to success.
Keep snack foods, leftovers, and frozen meals handy so you will stick to your plan.
Click here for some great meal planning tips and a meal planning template.
Bonus Tip: Don’t worry if you stuff up occasionally
No one is perfect and kick starting a new diet plan can be challenging so don’t beat yourself up if you stuff it up occassionally.
In fact, be prepared for failure because it’s bound to happen at some stage.
The main point is to go slow if YOU need to. As long as you are moving forward one step at a time, you will eventually reach your destination 🙂
Hope you find these tips helpful.
Nutritionist & Health Coach
P.S. If you’d like some support to reach your goals, join us inside the GFE Virtual Nutrition School. We’ve got all the tools and tips to make it easier for you 🙂