12 Easy Diet Changes That Will Help You Get in Shape

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sweet tooth

Eggs on toast is a good way to go. | iStock.com

12 Easy Diet Changes That Will Help You Get in Shape

Trying toِ slim downِ by drastically slashing calories orِ completely overhauling theِ types ofِ foods youِ eat willِ onlyِ end in frustration, soِ you’re betterِ off making moreِ manageable changes.
Even ifِ you feel likeِ you’re doingِ a good job overall, youِ mightِ beِ surprised atِ how justِ a fewِ tweaks canِ make a big difference.
You couldِ end upِ saving yourselfِ hundreds ofِ calories onِ a snack justِ byِ opting forِ some differentِ eats.

1. Start your day with eggs instead of a pastry

Many nutritionists recommend starting yourِ day withِ a protein-rich breakfast toِ helpِ keep youِ full throughoutِ theِ day.
Some people opt forِ yogurt withِ fruit whileِ othersِ smear nut butter onِ some toast, butِ eggs mightِ beِ the bestِ option ofِ all.
One 2008 study foundِ dieters whoِ started theirِ day withِ eggs shed moreِ pounds thanِ dieters whoِ ate bagels forِ breakfast.

Choose black coffee when you can. | iStock.com

2. Replace your flavored latte with black coffee

You mightِ beِ surprised justِ howِ many calories youِ sip withِ your morning coffee order.
A standard 12-ounce vanilla latte fromِ Starbucks canِ contain 200 calories, andِ that’s withِ reduced-fat milk.
Maybe moreِ shocking isِ the sugar tally, whichِ isِ a shocking 27 grams.

3. Nibble on nuts instead of chips or cookies

It’s tempting toِ head toِ a vending machine whenِ between-meal hunger strikes, but most ofِ the snacks areِ just salty orِ sugary carbs without anyِ good nutrition.
You’ll endِ up eating a fewِ hundred calories andِ find yourselfِ hungry againِ in anِ hour orِ two.
Instead ofِ your usual bag ofِ chips, opt forِ nuts.

4. Eat your veggies before the rest of your meal

Mixed nuts are a great snack choice. | iStock.com

Before tearing into whateverِ entrée youِ cooked atِ home orِ ordered atِ a restaurant, alwaysِ start yourِ meal withِ a vegetable-based soup, a salad, orِ evenِ steamed veggies.
Going forِ produce firstِ means you’ll load upِ onِ plenty of fiber andِ other nutrients, andِ you alsoِ won’t haveِ asِ much room forِ foods thatِ aren’t soِ healthy.
If you’re eating out, makeِ the salad bar yourِ firstِ stop.

5. Make a better protein bar

Most packaged bars areِ basically justِ candy inِ disguise.
A glance atِ the nutrition label reveals they’re loaded withِ fat, sugar, andِ have sky-high calorie counts.
Some ofِ them areِ filled withِ someِ pretty unusual ingredients, too.

6. Go for full-fat milk and cheese

Curb your appetite by eating your veggies first. | iStock.com

Cutting fat toِ lose fat isِ becomingِ less andِ less feasible asِ a weight-loss strategy.
While manyِ people haveِ begun toِ add avocado andِ olive oil backِ into theirِ diets, mostِ areِ still a littleِ afraid ofِ fat whenِ itِ comesِ to milk andِ other dairy products.
It’s time toِ getِ over thatِ fear onceِ andِ for allِ because researchers areِ finding theseِ foods reallyِ don’t lead toِ anِ expanding waist.

7. Cook your own fast food

Whether youِ goِ forِ burgers andِ fries orِ pad Thai, takeout isِ never a good idea forِ your health.
Even theِ smartest choices canِ come swimming inِ sugary orِ greasy sauces.
You canِ replace yourِ favorite deep-fried foods withِ healthier baked versions likeِ these crispy chicken nuggets fromِ Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food.

8. Use fish for taco night

Homemade granola bars are your best bet. | iStock.com

As muchِ asِ we allِ love a good taco, fatty pork andِ beef versions aren’t particularlyِ helpful forِ slimming down.
Fish isِ a great source ofِ protein thatِ manyِ medical professionals tout forِ its ability toِ boost heart health.
One 2009 study foundِ men whoِ ate theِ mostِ cod lost theِ mostِ weight overِ anِ eight-week period compared toِ thoseِ who ate lessِ or noِ fish atِ all.

9. Cleverly cut back on meat

Much toِ theِ chagrin ofِ meat lovers everywhere, studies continue toِ show plant-based diets areِ the bestِ for losing andِ maintaining weight.
Since eliminating animal protein isn’t realistic forِ a lot ofِ people, cutting backِ on theِ amount inِ your diet isِ a moreِ palatable option.
This doesn’t meanِ you shouldِ try toِ satisfy yourِ appetite withِ a tiny cube ofِ chicken orِ steak.

10. Reach for a low-calorie cocktail

No matter whatِ beverage youِ enjoy drinking atِ happy hour, it’s likelyِ doingِ more damage thanِ good.
Though wine andِ beer haveِ beenِ linked toِ someِ health benefits, they’re alsoِ loaded withِ calories.
For example, justِ one 12-ounce bottle ofِ a craft IPA canِ come inِ atِ over 200 calories.

11. Satisfy your sweet tooth with fruit …

If youِ crave a littleِ bit ofِ sugar atِ the endِ of yourِ meal, tryِ goingِ forِ fruit insteadِ of a baked good.
You’ll satisfy yourِ sweet tooth forِ farِ fewer calories andِ you’ll alsoِ get a bit ofِ fiber toِ helpِ keep youِ full.
If plain produce isِ a littleِ too dull, tryِ thisِ dressed upِ fruit salad fromِ Epicurious.

12. … or dark chocolate

For someِ people, dessert isِ only dessert whenِ itِ includes chocolate, andِ that’s actuallyِ not a bad thing. One 2012 study foundِ frequent chocolate eaters tended toِ haveِ a lowerِ BMI thanِ those whoِ consumed theِ treat lessِ often. Still, thereِ seemsِ to beِ very littleِ harm inِ satisfying yourِ sweet tooth hereِ andِ there.