Sunday, 3 November 2013

Small changes that can add up to a big difference to your weight!

Trying to lose weight isn't easy. There's no quick fix. It will be hard and it will take time.

Trying to tackle the issue of weight loss is hard enough without having to make lots of big changes all at once to your diet and lifestyle. No wonder so many people fall off the band wagon! You are much more likely to stick to your goals if they are:

               SMART (specific, measurable, acheivable, realistic and time-based)

Start with small changes and you will find them a lot easier to stick to and rewarding when you can actually acheive them!

I've put together a list of mini goals to help you get started on some of the weight loss basics. These are small changes that can add up to a big difference to your weight...

Reduce your portion sizes
  • Use a smaller plate or try not to make the meal spill out onto the rim of the plate
  • At dinner-time, fill half your plate with vegetables or salad first, before adding the rest of the meal  - this will automatically reduce your meat and carbohydrate portions while still satisfying you with the same volume of food
  • Serve out meals in the kitchen and pack leftovers away in a container in the fridge before you eat, to make it more difficult to go back for seconds
  • Opt to downsize rather than upsize when ordering out: go for a small cappuccino or juice instead of a regular; skip the meal deals and you'll avoid the extra kilojoules in the softdrink and fries
  • When eating out, ask the waiter to 'doggy-bag' what you don't eat (this way you won't feel like you have to finish it in the restaurant) 

Don't miss out on all you enjoy: everything in moderation
  • When eating out, share an entree or dessert
  • Don't be afraid to ask for sauces or dressings on the side
  • Practice mindful eating: when you have a craving for something unhealthy, such as chips or chocolate or softdrink, wait 10 minutes and if you still want it, take a small portion (such as 2 squares of chocolate) and make a point of eating if very slowly, and actually savour and enjoy it. You'll find you are satisfied even after that small amount
Reduce the amount of takeaway and fast food you eat
  • Bake double batches of meals like Bolognaise, soup and casseroles and freeze the remainder in individual or family-sized portions for those night's you're too busy to cook (then you'll have no excuse for grabbing takeaway on the way home from a busy day)
  • Utilise leftovers- they make great lunches
  • Keep a supply of lunch ingredients at work (such as tinned tuna, wholegrain crackers or wraps, four bean mixes, salad dressing and a few salad items)
  • Make home cooking fun and keep it interesting by searching for new recipe ideas and let each family member choose a new (healthy) recipe to make (or help make) one night a week
  • Always carry a healthy snack with you (such as a muesli bar, piece of fruit or snap lock bag of trial mix) to prevent those bad hunger decisions
  • Take turns with friends to have dinner at each others houses to catch up instead of eating out (bring back the good ol' fashioned dinner parties I say!)

Reduce the amount of high kilojoule/calorie foods that you eat
  • Swap full cream milk to reduced fat milk (and the same for all other dairy foods)
  • Swap regular mince to lean or heart smart mince and trim fat off meat before cooking
  • Swap juice for fruit
  • Swap softdrink for sparkling water with a squeeze of lemon
  • Base your meals and snacks on vegetables and fruit, lean meat, low fat dairy and wholegrain breads and cereals
Become more aware of what you eat
  • Keep a food diary and write down everything you eat (including amounts). You'll be amazed at how much this can change you're eating habits because you don't want to write it down and become accountable for it!
  • Eat regular meals and where possible have set meal times (for example, breakfast at 7am, morning tea at 10am, lunch at 1pm, afternoon tea at 4pm and dinner at 7pm). This way you don't get famished if a meal is late and eat twice as much
  • Plan your meals for the week, write a shopping list, and stick to it!
  • Be aware of your body's hunger and fullness signals- eat when you are hungry and stop eating when you are around 80% full

Increase the amount of exercise you do
  • Meet friends for a walk instead of a coffee
  • Take the stairs instead of the lift
  • Walk to a colleagues office instead of sending an email
  • Stand up or walk around while speaking on the phone (even standing burns more kilojoules than sitting and has been shown to reduce our disease risk)
  • Park a bit further away and walk the rest (it will also solve your issues of finding a park!)


  1. And of course don't forget to drink your whisky straight at these dinner parties without the added sugar of Coke, just like Don Draper.

  2. Love this blog! Some great tips there... I think I'm going to have to implement some myself :) Hannah x