Pick a plan. Find a diet that works for you. You want to look for something like “Eat Clean” or “South Beach” that will educate you on changing your life style, and not a three day grapefruit diet. Depriving yourself will end badly. If you want to put together your own plan, set daily calorie goals and eat food as naturally as possible (avoid processed foods). I use a Calorie King book to look up food calories or there are plenty of online sites to find calorie content of foods.
Set a realistic goal. Your ultimate goal may be to lose 50 pounds, but start with smaller mini-goals that are more obtainable. Perhaps you want to fit into a dress you haven’t worn for a long time, or to lower your cholesterol to a healthy level. Whatever it is, write it down and remind yourself of your goal periodically.
Motivation. Find out what motivates you. It could be a new pair of shoes, a vacation or a day at the spa. Reward yourself frequently.
Get plenty of sleep (at least 7-8 hours).
Eat healthy. Strive for 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. If you include a fruit or vegetable with each meal and mid-morning and mid-afternoon snack you will get them all in.
Portion size. Use measuring cups and kitchen scales to make sure you are aware of portion sizes. A serving of meat is approximately the size of a pack of playing cards or the palm of your hand.
Don’t skip meals. Eat every 2 ½ to 3 hours. Allow only a small snack after the evening meal.
Read labels. Low fat can mean higher sugar. Educate yourself on what labels mean.
Drinks. Avoid sugary drinks and make sure you get in 8 glasses of water a day.
Keep a food journal.
Measure yourself once a week. Sometimes the inches come off when the pounds don’t. It will keep you motivated.
Exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes a day, at least five days a week. If you are not ambitious about exercising, walk for 15 minutes then turn around and come back = 30 minutes. Or take three ten minute walks.