Being on a diet can some people lose weight, but it is also very stressful. If you are someone who does not thrive on the restrictions of a diet, you may need to establish some rules for making good food choices. For some making the right food choices can lead to weight loss without calorie counting and without excessive restrictions. Food choices can be broken down by food groups.
Dairy is a good place to start because it can include very healthy foods or calorie bombs that can cause you to gain weight and negatively affect your health. Foods like greek yogurt and certain cheeses pack a flavor punch and you can enjoy them without over indulging. Buy plain greek yogurt and flavor it yourself with berries, nuts and a little honey. Choose cheeses that have a strong flavor so that you only need a little. Good choices are parmesan, asiago, sharp cheddar and bleu cheese. If you want something a little more mild then go for an ounce of goat cheese.
The next food group is fruits and vegetables. You really cannot go wrong with this group. Some have fewer calories, but they are all packed with nutrients and flavor. Many of them can fill you up for a low amount of calories. If you want fruit that has tons of nutrition with few calories go for berries. Berries are full of antioxidants and are very low in calories. For variety add apples, melons and bananas. Pair fruit salad with greek yogurt for a healthy, well balanced breakfast.
The only limits you really need to put on vegetables is on starchy vegetables. You should watch your portion sizes with vegetables like corn, peas and potatoes because they are higher in calories. Otherwise feel free to eat as many vegetables as you want. The more vegetables you eat, the less you will eat of other types of food that might prevent weight loss or cause weight gain. Fill at least half of your plate with vegetables and eat them with every meal and snack.
Protein is the next group to turn your attention to. You will want to eat a wide variety of protein sources from both plants and animal sources. Dairy can be a good source of protein and so can lean meats. Most of the time you should choose fish and then chicken or turkey. Other lean meats from beef and pork are fine occasionally. Plant sources of protein can also help you reach optimum health. Try having nuts, nut butters and soy if soy is something that you eat. Tofu, soy milk and veggie burgers can all be excellent sources of low calorie protein.
Grains are the next place that you can make good choices. You will need to choose whole grains at least half the time. Good choices are oatmeal, whole grain cereal and bread, high fiber pasta, brown rice, amaranth and quinoa. If you need simple carbs then grab a banana, an orange, or some berries.
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