If you only want to lose 10 pounds, you may have something in common with the dieter who’s been on a successful campaign to lose a lot but can’t seem to drop those last few pounds. Sneaky hidden calories could be the stumbling block. Tweaking your daily eating habits with small changes could reward you with some big weight loss benefits. This plan will help you shed 10 pounds easily if you make these tweaks part of your routine. Adopt these and you won’t need a drastic diet.
Start by journaling everything you eat.
Track what you eat for a week to find how how hidden calories are sneaking in. Writing down meals and snacks can show you how you might want to change eating habits. You may be surprised when you analyze your journal to find out how unconscious munching adds up. An app like MyFitnessPal can help.
Think about portion control before you carelessly indulge in too much food. Measure food at home for a few days to get used to seeing what a serving size looks like.
Measure salad dressing.
Nutritionists recommend a salad dressing serving size of two tablespoons for 120 calories. Accidentally over-pouring by another two tablespoons will deliver a 240-calorie serving. Measure dressing a few times so that you learn to eyeball two tablespoons. Hint: one tablespoon resembles a poker chip. Another easy way to limit your serving is to put dressing in a spray bottle and spritz your salad.
Don’t overdo yogurt toppings.
Rely on fresh fruit or dried fruit for toppings, but don’t use both on your Greek yogurt. Add just one healthy fat such as nuts or nut butter. This trick will keep you from accidentally loading up healthy yogurt with too much sugar, fat and calories.
Limit alcohol to one drink a day.
Adding sugar and calories to cocktails can be another pitfall for the unwary dieter. Leave out the simple syrups and mix vodka or gin with low-cal flavors such as tonic, club soda and lime. Add fresh herbs such as like rosemary and thyme instead of simple syrups. Five ounces of wine gives you about 120 to 130 calories and a typical light beer delivers 100 calories per 12 fluid ounces. A vodka drink delivers about 8o calories per one ounce of vodka.
Load up on veggies.
Half your dinner plate should be filled with vegetables, while meat and grains should each take up a quarter of the rest of the plate. No need to measure veggies when you eat them raw or prepare them by steaming, grilling or sautéing in broth. Veggies are so low in calories that you can fill up on them without measuring.
Indulge in beans.
Beans, just like vegetables, give you fiber and help with weight loss. Chickpeas, white beans, black beans, and lentils make you feel fuller faster and provide high protein levels. Sneak beans into your diet by blending pureed white beans into a smoothie and using roasted chickpeas in lieu of croutons on a salad. Add black beans to a brownie recipe and lentils into your meatballs.
Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep at night.
Getting enough sleep is important when you are trying to control calorie intake. You’re in trouble if you are too groggy to make healthy decisions, if you’re too tired to exercise and if you lack the energy to cook healthy meals for yourself. Lack of sleep can make it tougher to curb your appetite and lose weight.
Read More: The 23 Best Weight-Loss Tips From Women Who’ve Actually Lose Weight