"9 Strategies to Make Your Diet Resolutions Stick" Review

Are you having a hard time sticking to your resolutions? Check out the 6 tips I pulled from the Livestrong article "9 Strategies to Make Your Diet Resolutions Stick"":

1. Make It Personal

Setting a successful resolution isn’t just about what you want to accomplish, but why, on a personal level, it’s important for you to achieve your goal. “Research shows that intrinsic motivation is the key when it comes to those who can make a resolution and stick to it. Intrinsic motivation is that thing that drives someone to achieve something great. It is usually personal to them for their own reasons. For example, losing weight to improve your self-esteem is a personal motivation as opposed to losing weight because your family wants you to. Invest in resolutions that are personal to you,” says Misti Gueron M.S., RD, medical nutrition therapist at the Khalili Center. Whether it’s boosting your self-confidence or having more energy to play with your kids, determine your intrinsic motivation and write it down somewhere so that it will personally inspire you to stay on track.

2. Create a Plan for Success

“Diet resolutions are often short lived because our daily lives and social connections reflect our old habits. Many think that New Year’s resolutions will magically happen at the start of a new year or that their willpower will magically get them through the unexpected diversions. Taking a little time to plan and organize your physical and social environment will pay off in the long run,” says Misti Gueron M.S., RD. For example, if your resolution is to eat more fruits and vegetables, set a reminder on your phone to grocery shop at a set time each week and choose your favorite fruits and vegetables that are most convenient for your lifestyle. According to the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council poll, respondents said eating more healthy foods like blueberries is one of the easiest resolutions to keep, with nearly three quarters saying it would be really easy or pretty easy. Decide what healthy resolutions would be easiest and most enjoyable for you, then set a plan for success.

3. Home Not-So-Sweet Home

Rather than resolving to never eat a sweet again -- which would take a lot of effort and create a feeling of deprivation -- a more realistic resolution would be to create an environment in which you can consume fewer sweets without having to rely solely on your willpower. “Ridding your cupboards and freezer of all sweets is one easy and effective strategy that sticks when it comes to resolutions. Research shows that when sweets are within arm’s reach or even within our sight, we are much more likely to consume them than if we have to go out to the store to buy them,” says Misti Gueron, M.S., RD. If you don’t have total control over not having sweets in your home due to those you live with, be sure to store them in areas where you are least likely to see them and put healthier foods you like in eyesight.

4. Get in the Game

Gamification of weight loss is a strategy that most are not familiar with, and research is showing that this may be a successful way to achieve a New Year’s resolution when it comes to healthy eating, exercise and weight control. “Gamification of weight loss is when large groups of people are offered financial as well as other incentives to be involved in a competitive challenge with others. Grouping people together in an effort to encourage healthy habits can foster member camaraderie and commonality, challenge and excitement and furthered learning about getting healthier. In these scenarios, many individuals have gotten healthier, minimized or eradicated health problems and changed the course of their lives. Research shows that community support and a commonality among individuals trying to get healthier can foster healthy behavior change for the long term,” says Misti Gueron, M.S., RD.

5. Eat More Mindfully

One of the most important New Year’s resolutions to eating a healthy diet has nothing to do with what you’re eating and everything to do with how you’re eating. “Eat meals more mindfully: Remove physical distractions while you eat -- no phone, TV, book or newspaper -- and try to keep your focus on the actual eating experience (how the food tastes and what is going on in your mouth). It is natural that your attention will wander while you eat, but you want to bring it back to the food at least a few times throughout the meal to check in on whether you are still enjoying the food and whether or not you are still hungry. Being more mindful will enable you to enjoy your food more and enable you to stop eating when you are comfortably full rather than just when your plate is cleaned,” says Alyse Levine, M.S., RD.

6. Recruit Support

Who you surround yourself with is a critical component of your ability to reach and maintain your goals. “Research shows that without support among our friends, families and within our communities, we are much less likely to create healthy changes with our health and weight. Reaching new health goals is more successful within a supportive environment and with individuals of similar values,” says Misti Gueron, M.S., RD. Take a look at those in your life and make an effort to spend quality time with those that support and inspire you. “When you are feeling discouraged for not making it to the gym and your friend sends a text message that she is waiting for you on the treadmill, it is hard to throw the towel in on yourself and her,” adds Gueron.

What other strategies have helped you stick to your goals?

Picture Credit: LIVESTRONG.com - I love strawberries! What will be your "sweet" replacement?

Article Credit:
Author: Michael Moody Fitness with excerpt sourced from LIVESTRONG.com
"9 Strategies to Make Your Diet Resolutions Stick" Review
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