How to Start a DietPosted on Dec 3rd 2009 2:53PM by Karen Asp
Filed Under: Diet & Weight Loss
Whether you want to lose weight or get healthier, you're finally ready to commit to a diet. But if you want to succeed, you've got to prepare yourself. "Making lifestyle changes can be tough, which is why you should set yourself up to go the distance," says Martha McKittrick, R.D., C.D.E., C.D.N., a nutritionist in New York City. Here are nine pre-diet strategies you should follow to ensure long-term success:
1. Determine if the time is right.
Any change in lifestyle will take mental and physical energy, which will be tough if you're in the middle of a job upheaval, family crisis or other stressful situation. So before you start this diet, make sure you have the time, energy and focus to devote to it.
2. Draw from the past.
If you're like most people this probably isn't the first time you've tried dieting. Even if you didn't succeed in the past, you can still learn from what you've done. So ask yourself what worked in the past. Why did it work? On the flip side, what didn't work for you and why not?
3. Clean your environment.
Let's face it: Willpower is hard to attain, which is why if your house and office are loaded with foods that tempt you, you're starting with a disadvantage. The solution? Do a sweep of your environment and eliminate danger or trigger foods. Even if you have to keep these foods around the house for your kids, buy brands you don't like.
4. Create a support system.
Studies show that people who lose weight and keep it off have good support systems so start recruiting cheerleaders to help keep you on track. Maybe that's your family, your friends, your colleagues at work, even a group at church. Or if you prefer, you can always join a weight loss group like Weight Watchers or turn to the Internet to find buddies. No matter whom you enlist, having this support will help you stay the course, reinforcing your decision to become healthier.
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