This is not a diet – it’s a way of eating every day.

It’s about choices and setting yourself up for success.

Eat Dessert.

Yes, dessert. By eating a small dessert after a meal, you create a signal for yourself that your meal is over. A small piece of quality dark chocolate or a small serving (read the nutrition label to determine the serving size) of a low or non-fat dessert like sorbet or frozen yogurt is a good idea.

Paper napkins are your friend.

You thought your friend was crazy, using napkin after napkin to blot grease off of her pizza, but it turns out, you can blot a teaspoon or so of oil right off of that slice! It may seem trivial, but every little bit helps, and over time, those teaspoons add up!

Wear belts, and know how and when to tighten them.

Don’t torture your waistline, but be aware of it. By tightening a belt just a notch you have a gentle reminder of where you are and where you want to be. Someti


mes a scale isn’t the best indicator of your progress, but the way your clothes fit usually tells a lot.

Don’t be shy.

Tell friends, family and co-workers that you’re changing the way you eat. If they know you have set out on a path of eating right, you’ll have more than your eyes only on your plate and you’ll be less likely to make a bad choice. Hey, maybe it’ll even catch on and your healthy ways will spread!

Take the easy way out.

Buying pre-cut vegetables at the grocery store may seem like extravagant spending, but you’ll be more likely to crack open the bag and either snack from it or throw it in a pan and cook it up. Anything that makes it easier for you to get more vegetables into your diet is worth the extra little bit of cash. Go ahead, you’re worth it!

Keep healthy snacks on-hand, and eat them.

At different points during the day, a drop your blood sugar levels can cause hunger that we frequently ignore, only to make up for it by feeling starving when faced with a set meal time. By eating a small snack of about 150 calories, you’ll avoid over-eating at meal time and you’ll save more then the 150 calories you consumed.

Don’t drink your calories.

Unless it’s a beverage you’re really going to stop and take time to savor and enjoy, try to avoid drinks with a lot of calories. A few cans of soda or even a few glasses of juice, can add up quickly to a calorie count equal to a meal. We all know water is best, but unsweetened tea, hot or iced is a good alternative – and tea comes in a lot of flavors. You can experiment and try all different kinds, many of which have health benefits as well!

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You have plates, use them!

Eating food out of it’s container makes it harder to see exactly how much you’re eating, or when to stop. Check out the label- see what a serving size should equal, and plate it up. Make it look pretty even – so your eyes get to eat along with your mouth. You’ll feel satisfied by eating something that not only looks better, but that when you’ve finished what you’ve served yourself, you’ll know you’re done. Eat what’s there, then stop.

Go out for ice cream…or pizza…or…

If you don’t keep fatty foods in the house, you can’t eat them. But denying yourself your favorite treats will only backfire- so instead of denying a craving, go out to satisfy it. If you don’t have a pint of ice cream in your freezer, you can’t eat a pint of ice cream!

Simple tricks for dining out.

Pass on the bread. Don’t just say no to it when it’s passed around the table, ask the waiter to take it off the table entirely- or not even bring it in the first place. You can’t waste calories on food that’s not there.

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Opt for the salad as an appetizer. A dinner salad is a great way to start to fill up on low calorie veggies (steer clear of cheeses and fatty dressings) before you get your entrée. Order the dressing on the side and instead of pouring it on, dip each bite lightly into the dressing – you’ll see there will be a lot left when you’re done and you’ll save those calories for your entrée!