1) PREPARE YOURSELF FOR SUCCESS
In order to begin you need to prepare yourself mentally. Plan in advance what you will be eating during the week, write it out for yourself, stock up on those foods and make it happen!
2) PROTEIN IS VITAL
Make sure you eat protein in some form at every meal, including breakfast.
3) EAT LESS REFINED BREADS AND STARCHES
Cut back on the amount of bread and pasta you consume. Eat your pasta as your mid-day meal and if you do eat pasta or bread it comes from whole grains.
4) LIMIT YOUR DAIRY CONSUMPTION
Drink non-fat milk, eat low fat or fat free cheese and low fat yogurt but check the yogurt, some low fat yogurt has a very high sugar contant!
5) DON’T OVERDO THE FRUIT
No more than 2 a day and use just the good fiber kinds. Apples, pears, plums, and berries are best. Avoid fruit juices, they’re loaded with sugar!
6) EAT NUTS
Just stay in moderation here. A quarter cup of pistachios, almonds or cashews are not only tasty, but a good source of protein.
7) REDUCE THE PORTIONS
When at home, use smaller plates. If you go out, order the smaller size or if one size fits all, get a doggie bag in advance and put half your meal in it before you start to eat. You will fell better and have a good meal to eat again later.
8) DRINK LOTS OF WATER
Water has great dietary and overall health benefits. Many hunger pangs are due to lack of water. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day will keep you hydrated and will reduce food cravings.
9) GO MEATLESS FOR A MEAL A DAY
Try eating one meal per day with no meat. For example, have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich rather than a hamburger. You reduce bad fat and increase fiber and protein.
10) NEVER SKIP BREAKFAST
A proper breakfast gets your metabolism going. Use cereals with at least 5 grams of fiber and no more than 8 grams of sugar and use non-fat milk.
11) EAT MORE SEAFOOD
Eat water packed tuna and salmon, they are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids that help protect the heart. You should have these seafoods 2-3 times per week.
12) BRING YOUR OWN LUNCH
Rather than eating lunch out all the time, make your lunch and only eat out for lunch once a week. You’ll save money and know your eating good things like whole grain bread, lean chicken or ham and fruit or veggies.
The fact is, if you use these simple guidelines as a means to put together a plan of good eating habits you will be well on your way to developing them with sound nutrition and you will be paving the way for a life long journey of better health.
(This post courtesy of "Mr. Gym.")