A healthy diet is important to overall wellness, but counting calories obsessively can backfire and cause frustration.
According to the Washington Post, 45 million Americans claim to go on a diet each year.
If you need nutrition counseling and want to stop counting calories, read on for a list of eight ways you can break the habit.
1. Stop Using Calorie Counting Apps
There are a ton of smartphone apps out there that help you keep track of your calorie intake. However, using these apps can turn you into an obsessive calorie counter.
The first step toward a healthy diet is to delete these apps and stop using them altogether. When you’re not tied to an app, you won’t spend every waking moment worried about the calories you consume.
One of the best diet tips is to eat food that makes you feel satisfied. If you’re plugging numbers in on your phone, you won’t feel happy or content about what you eat.
2. Use Intuitive Eating
The process of intuitive eating teaches you to listen to your body and your hunger cues. You don’t have to starve yourself if you want to lose weight. When you learn how to eat till satiated, you’ll likely eat less.
It may take some time, but practicing intuitive eating can help you learn when to say when. Listen to your body and honor its hunger cues. Don’t ignore these cues if you’re hungry.
As you learn to listen to your body, you’ll recognize when you’re full. This technique is an effective way to help with issues like overeating or binge-eating.
3. Focus on Quality Over Quantity
Almost every type of diet counseling will tell you that you should keep your focus on the quality of food you eat. Rather than worrying about eating too much, you should stick to choosing nutrient-dense foods.
When you worry more about the quality of the foods you eat, your brain won’t focus on the calories as much. For example, eating a large salad is better than eating a small slice of cake.
While portion size is important, it’s not the only thing that matters when it comes to diet success. Always focus on choosing balanced foods to help you feel healthier.
4. Find Healthy Favorites
If you love to snack, look for a few healthy alternatives. Try carrot sticks for a satisfying crunch instead of greasy potato chips.
Experiment with a range of different healthy foods until you find some that you’ll enjoy eating every day. Part of the joy of eating is the satisfaction it gives you, so it’s important to eat foods you like.
Don’t deprive yourself if you want to lose weight or eat a healthy diet. Instead, try a few different things you enjoy so that you can make a healthy switch.
5. Monitor Your Mental Health
An important component of living a healthy lifestyle is your mental health and well-being. Consider using nutrition counseling services that work on your diet choices as well as your mental health.
When you feel good, you’ll probably make better food choices, too. Remember that a healthy lifestyle requires a balance between not just what you eat, but how you feel.
Rather than counting or tracking calories, consider keeping track of how you feel instead. Write your feelings down in a journal and use them to provide you with clues about how you can make healthier choices.
6. Use Professional Nutrition Counseling
Changing the way you eat and live isn’t always an easy task. It’s perfectly fine to ask for help from a professional nutrition counseling service.
These experts can walk you through the steps you need to take in order to be healthier. They’ll also work with you whenever you are struggling. There is no harm in asking for help, especially when it comes to your health.
Look for reputable nutrition counseling services or clinics near you to get the help you need. Whether it’s just for a few months or for years into the future, a little diet counseling is a great way to help you learn healthy habits without counting calories every day.
7. Plan Ahead
As with any goal, planning ahead is the key to success. Start by writing down some meal ideas, then prep them for the week in advance.
When you make grocery lists and plan your meals, you’ll have an easier time eating healthy foods. Focus on the things you enjoy, then look for recipes that you can use to incorporate them.
It may take a little bit of trial and error, but meal planning is an effective way to eat healthier. You can always make a large batch of something you enjoy, then portion it and freeze it for lunch or dinner throughout the week.
8. Avoid Negative Self-Talk
Everyone makes mistakes, and diet slip-ups are inevitable. The key is to get right back on track and pick yourself up after you fall.
Don’t be too hard on yourself and try not to take part in negative self-talk. When you beat yourself up, you’re only setting yourself up to fail.
Look for positive reinforcement or try meditating to help you feel at ease. Eventually, you’ll be able to keep a positive attitude which can help you make healthy choices.
Say No to Calorie Counting
From intuitive eating and meal planning to nutrition counseling, use these tips to help you stop counting calories. With the right plan and some help, you can start to eat healthier and enjoy the benefits of a healthy lifestyle.
For more information about our nutrition services and to find out how we can help, feel free to contact us today.