15 diet secrets to keep you in great shape

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Traditionally, the biggest piece of advice for people trying to lose weight was to do more exercise.

Now, it is thought that what you eat has as much as 80-90% effect on your overall figure.

Staggering statistic, don’t you think? I have always thought that food was important, but I had no idea it would be so decisive on your waistline.

Anyway, it is more important than ever to eat well and have the figure that you always wanted.

So here are fifteen tips to keep control of what you eat:

1. Never get yourself too hungry. When you get in a situation where you are totally starving, the body is so desperate for food that you are more likely to eat anything, even if it is 5 donuts in a row. Regular small meals are better than huge occasional ones, so try to keep your body fuelled every 3 or so hours.

2. If you are someone who works out, make sure that you eat well after training. If you have the commitment to be working out in the first place, do not ruin the good work by eating junk after. You can’t go wrong with a high protein meal of chicken and vegetables.

3. Focus on drinking a lot of water. If you replace water for every time you drink a fizzy drink or a sugar filled fruit juice, you will see the difference in your body in a short time.

4. Eat plenty of green vegetables. Widely considered to be the type of vegetables with the highest nutritional value, greens are what you should be aiming for. Spinach, kale, collard greens, broccoli – anything you want!

5. A study done in England suggested that spicy food makes you less hungry. After some personal experiences eating spicy food, this seems to make sense! Add chilli flakes to your meal (or even better, fresh chilli), paprika, capsicum, or anything else that you like! Spicy food also releases endorphins to your brain. Get spicy, get happy!

6. Eat plenty of garlic. There is a reason why people in certain provinces of Italy and Greece live to such a ripe old age. One of the reasons for this is the amount of garlic they consume in their diet. Garlic speeds up your immune system and has anti-oxidant values. Added to that, it makes food more delicious!

7. Consider boosting your immune system with a few supplements. Supplements can be a great way to help your system, especially when you are placing it under more strain with a lack of sleep or during the winter months. My favourite supplements are green tea extract (another anti-oxidant), and a simple multi vitamin. Fish oil is also great for improving mental process!

8. Focus your diet around where you can get the most nutrients, rather than which has the fewest calories. A high protein, high vegetable diet gives a great balance of different nutrients. It just so happens that this type of diet is the best for losing weight, too!

9. Eat plenty of soup. This may seem like the strangest piece of advice in this article so far, but soup is filling and made out of great ingredients.

10. Instead of trying to defeat cravings, simply write a list of what you are craving throughout the week, and indulge in a weekly ‘cheat day’. People who have done this on a consistent basis have noted that cravings have reduced after a few weeks. Cravings are more of a habit than you might imagine.

11. Focus on what you eat for breakfast above all other things. Why? Simply put, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Try and eat some protein within the first 30 minutes of waking up.

12. Buy a blender for your kitchen. This tip has surprised many people in the approach they take to eating. I now only eat breakfast smoothies, ensuring that I get all my protein and nutrients into my body quickly. It also only takes me about 3 minutes to prepare, and about 1 minute to drink. I could never manage a big breakfast before, but drinking a delicious smoothie was never a problem! Blenders are also great for making soups, chopping up vegetables, or even making cocktails. Trust me, you will be pleased with the change it makes in your life.

13. If you are going to treat yourself with a cake or something else delicious, get whatever you want and enjoy it. What is the point of treating yourself, but not actually allowing yourself the cookie because it looks a bit big? This type of self restraint is actually counterproductive in the end. Treat yourself with exactly what you want, and enjoy every mouthful of it!

14. Take time to think about what you are going to eat a day in advance. This is not an easy thing to do and takes time until it becomes normal in your life. However, without planning, it is much harder to eat in a way that will help you lose weight.

15. Set yourself a goal to aim for. Whatever you are hoping to achieve, set a time frame for you to achieve it in. This will focus the mind and make it even more satisfying when you achieve it. Enjoy the process of the improvements you are going to make to your body. It is impossible to make big change overnight; the process is slow and sometimes difficult. However, if you are working towards your goal, you know that what you are doing is worthwhile!

Whether you take on board all of these tips or just a few of them, good luck with the weight you are trying to lose.

Everyone is in the same boat as you, so if you are struggling, either reach out to a friend or read about others doing the same as you online. You will get there with the right processes!