I know I can’t be the only one that finds diet changes almost impossible to commit to. I never even thought I’d see the day that I would have to start a diet, so there I was…struggling. As I spoke about in my post “Eating By Blood Type,” my need for a diet change came about when I started experiencing a bad break out. I thought, of course, this would be easy because I wanted clear skin, but it was far from it. Attempting to go cold turkey on sweets, dairy and wheat was absolute torture and I didn’t even make it 3 days.
Now after 2 months of back and forth, I’ve finally locked down a system that works.
Make Your Diet Stick
1. Cold Turkey is for Stiffs
If you’re a real person going cold turkey is probably the hardest thing to do, especially when it comes to foods you eat regularly. Try to ween yourself off of those foods slowly, until you no longer crave them as much.
When I’ve tried quitting sweets cold turkey, in a matter of days I was gorging out on the foods that I tried to avoid. It was baaad. Instead I limited myself to 2 to 3 per week rather than eating it every day. After a while, I was able to reduce that to once a week and now my cravings have subsided even more.
2. Replace instead of Erase!
Since cold turkey doesn’t work that well, replacing the foods you shouldn’t be eating with better options is a better trick. Diets are often hard to stick to because they’re always about quitting and quitting is hard. When I had to cut back on my sugar intake, I turned to dried fruit and nuts. They are energizing and almost just as good as my favorite candy pick me ups.
I just refused to give up my love of cereal, so when replacing dairy I traded my 2% milk for Almond milk. It was not good at first but after a few trials with different cereals and other meals I grew to like it.
3. Don’t Oversell
When starting out a new diet it may sound easy. The thought of the results can sometimes cloud our judgement and make the most intense diet plan sound like a piece of cake. However, once it’s time to start, that list of meal changes can be quite intimidating. Be realistic with yourself. You know what you’re capable of and you’ll on be disappointing yourself if you end up breaking your diet. Start small and set reachable goals.
I started with processed sugars first and once I was at a good place with maintaing that portion of my diet, I worked on eliminating dairy. Track your progress and be sure to reward yourself, so it doesn’t feel like it’s in vain.
4. Think about the big picture!
No one diets for fun, so if you’re doing it it’s definitely for a good reason. Write down your goals and the reasons you’re starting the diet in the first place. Keep this memo somewhere you can see it daily to stay motivated. I wrote my diet changes done in my planner along with the reasons for each of them. Anytime I feel like reneging, I just look at my memo and my willpower comes back!