8 Diet Mistakes We’ve All Been Guilty of Making
Make the road to better health a little less bumpy by avoiding these common diet mistakes.
From picking the wrong substitutes to doing too much at once, it’s easy to make diet mistakes on the road to better health. Avoid these common pitfalls to help keep your diet on the right track towards long-term success. Want to get a jump start on the DASH diet?
Doing Too Much Too Soon
Successful diets are usually lifestyle changes, and diving in head-first can make it difficult to eat healthily for the long term. Gradually introduce restrictions and change eating habits over time to help ensure long-lasting results and avoid yo-yo dieting. After a while, you might not even feel like you’re on a diet, especially if these quick Mediterranean diet recipes are on your menu.
Swapping Fat for Sugar
Many low-fat “diet” foods are packed with sugar—and therefore calories—to improve their taste. That doesn’t mean you have to cut out treats entirely—check out our list of healthy baking tips for ways to trim the fat without sacrificing flavor.
If you’re just counting calories, it seems like it would make sense to cut out breakfast entirely. But many who miss the most important meal of the day end up overeating at lunch to make up for it. Try a healthy grab-and-go breakfast recipe to avoid unstoppable cravings later in the day.
Not Reading Labels
Phrases like “fat-free” and “all-natural” might seem appealing on food packaging, but they’re not always as healthy as they seem. Be sure to check out the nutritional information for the full picture on ingredients and nutrients to make sure food manufacturers aren’t pulling a fast one. Find out more about reading nutrition labels.
Not Counting Liquid Calories
Fruity smoothies, alcohol and sports drinks are often left unconsidered when tracking the day’s calories, but they can put up major hurdles on the road to health. Instead of sweet drinks, grab a glass of water to keep your appetite in check and avoid the extra calories.
Eating a little bit in between meals helps keep the body’s metabolism at peak performance, which helps burn calories throughout the day. Ignoring cravings can also lead to impulsive food decisions just to quell hunger. Try some of our healthy snack recipes to keep sated between meals.
On restrictive diets, the day-to-day menu can seem a little gloomy. There’s nothing wrong with grabbing the occasional slice of pizza or a bowl of ice cream, but over-indulging for every meal on a cheat day can set back progress and create an unhealthy relationship with food. Remember, comfort food can be healthy, too.
Not Planning Meals
Grocery shopping is tough when you’re on a diet, so smart meal planning is crucial to keep your kitchen organized. Make a fridge list or spreadsheet to plan your meals throughout the week, and you’ll be less likely to order takeout when hunger cravings knock on your tummy’s door.