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Small Changes for Big Weight Loss

February 12, 2020

Do you remember the story about the tortoise who races the hare? The hare starts out much faster than the tortoise, but the tortoise eventually wins the race as the hare peters out. Weight loss is similar to the animals’ race, since although rapid weight loss diets can give you a quick lead, slower, steadier approaches can eventually lead to more weight loss overall, and a better chance of maintaining that loss.

Eating More to Lose More

It tends to be easier to stick to a weight loss plan when the focus is on eating more, not eating less. Still, it may not have been that easy to eat more of the weight loss power foods at the beginning of the weight loss journey if vegetables and whole grains, for example, were not frequent guests at the table. 

It is worth giving yourself a hand if you have acquired a taste for salads, fish, chicken, and steamed green beans because piling these and similar foods onto your plate can take the place of higher-calorie foods and help you lose weight without much effort.

These are some ways to eat more to lose more weight.

  • Add a side salad with greens, vegetables, and a small amount of dressing to any meal.

  • Double up on vegetable toppings when ordering sandwiches and pizzas.

  • End a meal with a large cup of decaf coffee and a bowl of fresh fruit.

  • Snack on raw vegetables and plain yogurt anytime.

  • Eat chicken or another protein on a mountain of lettuce, spinach, or other greens.

  • Start a meal with a chunky, broth-based soup.

Eating Less to Lose More

There may be more changes that are easier to make as you get further in your weight loss journey and continue to be dedicated to healthy choices. Some people find that things that used to be necessary for life become, after a few months of commitment to a healthy lifestyle, less essential. While it may not have seemed possible before, now it may be okay to:

  • Swap cold water for a soda.

  • Order kid-sized or small instead of large.

  • Skip dessert a few times a week or cut dessert in half.

  • Eat half the restaurant meal instead of the whole thing.

  • Say, “No, thanks,” when someone offers you candy or a baked good and you are not hungry.

  • Have a burger without fries or wings without dipping sauce.

  • Have one piece of pizza instead of three.

  • Swap applesauce for butter in baked goods.

Subtle Changes to HOW You Eat

Eating is not only about what and how much you eat, but how you eat it. That can affect your weight loss, too. As you consider changes that can contribute to weight loss, these may be ideas that can not only increase weight loss, but add to general enjoyment.

  • Eating slowly, with chewing more times, putting the fork down between bites, and talking a lot (without food in your mouth) being good ways to practice.

  • Having a pleasant eating environment, whether that means eating with friends or alone, in candlelight, with music or in silence, or in a small or large room or outdoors.

  • Enjoying each bite of your food, including scents, flavors, appearances, and textures.

  • Being mindful of how food makes you feel as you are eating and in the hours after you finish.

A large part of the experience with Lark DPP is learning about the “soft” parts of eating. That is a good reason to try or continue the program.


All-Day Metabolism Boosters

Cutting calories from food and drink is the most effective way to lose weight, but you can help yourself out by boosting your metabolism. These are some ways to burn more calories all day, some with scarcely any effort, to lose more weight over the long haul.

  • Taking the stairs or walking up or down the stairs while on the escalator.

  • Standing up or taking a walk while on phone calls or when meeting with coworkers or clients.

  • Parking at the far end of parking lots and walking around the perimeter before entering the building and before getting back into your car.

  • Eating spicy foods.

  • Drinking caffeinated coffee or tea in the morning.

  • Getting adequate sleep.

  • Managing stress better.

  • Moving around with squats, knee bends, marching in place, arm swings, or anything else during commercials while watching television and at least once an hour while at work.

Little changes can be effective for weight loss, and can be easy to implement without cutting into your regular lifestyle. Lark can help as you lose weight, with suggestions, tips, reminders, and feedback to keep you right on track as you prevent or delay type 2 diabetes.

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