Today you are going to learn what the very BEST diet in the entire world is.

I don’t know why I waited so long to tell you this.  It’s an amazing diet and works every time.  Is it low-carb, high-fat, IIFMM, the all-green food diet?  The very best diet is….

THE ONE YOU STICK WITH!

Duh, right! I am an advocate of the non-diet.  If you come to me for nutritional counseling, I will not hand you a piece of paper with a specific diet on it and tell you to conform to this. I was someone who struggled with “how to eat” for a while after college.  I’d eat what I wanted, feel bad about myself or my weight, and then start each Monday with a new “diet” plan and inevitably barely made it to Wednesday afternoon.  Sound familiar?  

When I finally turned a corner in regards to my relationship with food, it was because I learned how to create a meal plan that didn’t exclude foods, but supported my body with sound nutrition advice.  Not a “quick” fix, but a long term plan for eating well.

Yes, specific diets can work.  People have success with them, but in my opinion the best way to find your happy weight and happy place with food is to learn to make better food choices.  Make it a lifestyle change.  Sure, a bag of Doritos tastes great, but when you understand why an afternoon snack should contain protein and fiber and when you know how to compose a snack to fit those needs then the Doritos don’t add up as part of this “healthier-you” plan.

When I think about my “day of food”, these are some principles that I look to achieve:

  • Eat 3 meals with 2 snacks if hungry
  • Aim for 25+ grams of fiber
  • Aim to eat a protein, carbohydrate, and fat each time I eat
  • Add a fruit or vegetable to every meal
  • Avoid drinking my calories if there’s a whole food alternative available

The problem I see with many people looking to lose weight is they don’t want to “think”.  They don’t want to have to make tough choices and pick the right foods ALL.DAY.LONG.  That’s why people are drawn to restrictive diets that limit choices or “21/30 day plans” that give them specific parameters on how to eat.  Am I against these?  No.  I think they can work, but what about when the “challenge” is over or the restrictions become too tough?  Where do you go?  Back to your old diet ways and in 6 weeks you’re looking for the next quick fix.

Unfortunately I can’t prescribe the “best diet in the world”, but I can offer some tips to get you on the right track to making better, permanent lifestyle choices:
  • Meal Plan
  • Shop Smart
    • The easiest place to avoid lower quality foods is at the grocery store
  • Record what you eat
    • It’s tedious, but it will help you understand meals and foods that you like and that work for you.  Plus studies show dieters posse 15% more when they track food
  • Eat at home and pack lunch
  • Eat whole foods over bars, shakes, and packaged items
  • Think before you eat
    • When planning a meal think and ask yourself, “Is there a source of protein? A healthy fat? Some carbohydrates? Can I add a fruit or vegetable?”
My #1 goal as an RD is for people to have a healthy relationship with their body and food.  It’s not always about a number or the scale.  I truly want you to be able to get through the day making food choices that are neither grueling and restrictive or that leave you feeling like you failed again.  If you’d like help achieving your perfect diet seek out a Registered Dietitian in your area or email me for help.