Time Poor Training – Practical Weight Loss Tip 1

There are countless diet experts with various recommendations online, some of them are true experts and some maybe not so much. There’s advice around on everything from:

What to eat: everything on the continuum from vegan to wholly carnivore

and

When to eat: intermittent fasting, alternate day fasting, have breakfast/don’t have breakfast.

We think that some of this advice has taken on the characteristics of ideology and is more about putting down others’ views rather than looking simply to help people.

We’re not dietician’s or nutritionists and won’t pretend to be. So, we’re just going to share some recommendations over a few posts that we believe are easy to understand and easy to implement.

Just to be clear the idea is that you implement one of these tips for a short period of time and then when you’re confident it’s in place, start to implement the next one. Using this slow steady approach you will reap great benefits.

Our first practical weight loss tip would be, don’t eat between your main meals.

In her excellent book, The Shape We’re In , Sarah Boseley points out that it was during the 70’s in the UK that the large confectionary companies marketed, for the first time, treats “you could eat between meals without ruining your appetite”. Up to that point parents would tell children to wait until your lunch or dinner if they were hungry because otherwise they wouldn’t be able to eat their dinner and the implication was that  the dinner food was better for you than the snack food. Snacks weren’t the norm.

Once the confectionery companies got people to accept the snacks between meal in principle, however, they had a bridgehead they could build on. If children could eat then so could adults. If you could eat a small bar of chocolate why not a medium bar, if you could eat mid-afternoon why not mid-morning. These snack breaks became the social norm. Sarah points out that we went from a situation where eating a snack on the high street would have been seen as odd, if not downright rude to it being the norm.

Next, came the assertion that more small meals throughout the day was preferable to few large meals intermittently. There was never any scientific basis for this but eventually it just became accepted ‘wisdom’. Again the food companies understood that 5 small meals would grow to 5 medium meals and in some cases 5 large meals.

So, our advice to you, if you find you do snack between meal, is choose 3 or 4 meals for the day and stick to them (3 would be better but 4 may be more manageable at the outset, so just go with that). Look at your daily routine and figure out when the easiest times for you to eat and stick to them. Try it for a month and you will lose weight. It is very hard to eat, in one sitting, what you can eat in two, even if one of those was a snack.

One important caveat to this would be if you are on a medically supervised diet by a health professional that has stipulated you need to eat regularly to maintain some health marker then you should stick to this. But the people in this category will be a very small minority.

If you find during the first few days that you’re having cravings at your normal snack times, try to interrupt the pattern by taking a walk or having water or tea or black coffee.

This first practical weight loss tip is enough to implement initially and we’ll give some more tips in coming posts.