Food Forecast: New Year's Weight Loss Challenge

Food Forecast: New Year’s Weight Loss Challenge

March 10. 2021

As the calendar turns to 2021, there’s no better time to put a renewed focus on what fuels your body. Whether your goals are to lose weight or feel better overall, changing your diet through your New Year’s Weight Loss Challenge is a great way to accomplish those goals. Sure, it can seem cliché, but a sense of determination, some creativity, and consistency can set the stage for a new you in 2021. While it may seem ambitious to overhaul your entire diet, focusing on one or two changes can be more comfortable and practical. No one likes completely changing your diet in a day, so no need to attempt that!

Tips to Try

To maximize your New Year’s Resolution diet, there are several essential tips you can try as you attempt to change your eating habits. Some are easier than others depending on your current eating habits, but hopefully, some of these tips will generate the changes you seek.

Cut Out the Sugary Drinks

Starting strong with arguably the most challenging tip, cutting sugary drinks out of your New Year’s Weight Loss Challenge will show tremendous results, even in the first month. Sugary drinks offer loads of calories and sugar for almost no health benefit. By no means is this a mandate to altogether remove sugary drinks from your diet! Instead, focus on cutting your intake by even one or two a week or attempting to transition to some other type of beverage.

These changes can have drastic impacts on how you feel and how your body works, lessening the dependence on sugar and eliminating some of the sugar crash. These changes alone are reason enough to try this tip as you work towards a new you through your New Year’s Resolution diet.

Quick Tip: Try switching sodas for carbonated waters or some other drink with less added sugars. 

Try New Foods

This can seem daunting, but attempting to diversify your diet during the New Year will lead to innumerable health benefits. First, this trick will allow you to taste new flavor profiles and add additional nutrients to your diet. Second, by shifting away from some of your standbys, you’ll hopefully move from some not-so-good foods to nutrient-packed foods while maintaining a high-quality taste.

You know what you like, but it’s often challenging to find recipes that fit your palate or schedule. Luckily, there are numerous ways to find recipes that fit your lifestyle – apps like Pinterest have become so helpful at finding new ways to eat. If you can swing it, companies like Hello Fresh or Blue Apron provide great alternatives to traditional holiday food for your New Year’s Weight Loss Challenge while watching what you eat. What’s also great is that these meals come pre-portioned, meaning you can whip them up reasonably quickly and maintain proper serving sizes.

Quick Tip: Pick one recipe a week that “challenges” your taste comfort zone while providing a healthy alternative to your usual meals. 

Try Eating Breakfast and Snacking Frequently

Many times, with diets, you may think that it’s beneficial to skip breakfast and eliminate snacking from your daily routine. While this may seem like a great idea to cut down on the amount of food you take in, breakfast is a vital part of the day. We’ve heard this, but does it benefit us as much as the cliché implies? Yes, in short. Eating breakfast can improve all areas of our health, from memory to risk factors of heart disease. Even crazier, eating breakfast can even help us lose weight!

Similarly, snacking on healthy snacks throughout the day kicks our metabolism into gear. It simultaneously prevents us from overeating later on during lunch or dinner since we’ve already consumed something of substance. For your New Year’s Weight Loss Challenge, try implementing either of these small changes in a healthy way; if you already snack frequently, try subbing healthier versions of snacks with what you already typically eat. 

Quick Tip: Looking for some healthy snack alternatives? Fresh fruit, veggies, or nuts offer great ways to provide fuel and are jam-packed with nutrients, letting you snack with a purpose.

Change the Way You Think About Exercise

Everyone and their brother have “exercise more” on their New Year’s Resolution list for 2021. It’s an annual entrant into this game, but it often fizzles out within a month. Instead of focusing on the broad goal, why not attempt to change the way you think about exercise in the first place? This mental hurdle is often the reason that exercise gets pushed aside. We’re all very busy people and have a thousand things asking for attention daily, so changing your frame of reference regarding exercise can help you make a subtle change that greatly benefits your health. For instance, instead of focusing on the gym, we at weight loss clinic Chicago suggest you to find your closest National Park and go on a hike. This activity won’t seem like exercise at all! You’ll see loads of exciting things while burning calories, a win-win.

Instead of thinking of the negative ways to work out, flip the mindset to thinking of enjoyable ways to get your exercise. The possibilities are truly endless once you get out of the box of boring exercise routines.

Quick Tip: Partnering with an exercise buddy is an effective way to hold yourself accountable, whether for traditional habits or unique ways to get moving. It also makes the experience more enjoyable overall.

Conclusion

As mentioned, the New Year brings a fresh start with it, including a fresh start to your diet. When combined with other aspects of a healthy lifestyle, a more nutritious diet can significantly impact the number you see on the scale or just your overall health. By focusing your New Year’s Weight Loss Challenge on what you put into your body, you’ll see a difference in both how you feel and how you look. Small changes can be made to keep you on the straight and narrow regarding your diet – use the New Year as an opportunity to make these lasting changes for the better!

Nurse Walton

Author

Nurse Walton

Born and raised in Chicago, IL, Chanay received her Practical Nurse licensure and went to work in clinical specialties such as Home Health, Assisted Living, Long-Term Care and Dialysis Centers. Through this work, she realized the importance of diet, nutrition and weight loss among her patients. This led her to open A Better Weigh, Inc. Medical Weight Loss Center in 2009.

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