10 Kitchen Tips for Weight Loss Success
Losing weight means changing our habits; you know, the stuff you eat out of habit.
Half of the battle comes from figuring out what and how much you should eat. The other half is minimizing temptation and guesswork.
Fortunately, there are a few tools that you can invest in to take away the guesswork. With some subtle organization hacks and the tools you've invested in, you can put yourself in a great position to reach any fitness goals.
The best place to start is your kitchen.
So let's see what the nutrition pros recommend to optimize your weight loss success.
Improve Your Weight Loss in the Kitchen
1.) Rethink How You Are Measuring Your Portions
Oftentimes we change our eating habits to healthier foods, but we still may not lose the weight we expect to.
Portion control is a huge part of getting in shape, but it's hard to put to use.
I mean seriously, who has time to grab the food scale, measuring spoons, measuring cups, and measuring out everything?
If you don't have time to properly create healthy portions, there are plates and bowls that have a delineated serving size on them. It's honestly pretty eye-opening when you see what a true portion size is.
Portion sizes help you keep tabs of exactly what you are eating. It's heartbreaking when you see a true portion size of a nutritious food you may like - you'll see you've been eating three portions thinking it is one.
2.) Limit the Fun Food
We all have a few snacks we like to indulge in. A tip that has helped me and many of my friends is to limit ourselves to having just one of the unhealthy snacks we like in the kitchen.
Lisa Young, PhD, is a registered dietitian and she says the more variety we have on hand, the more we will eat.
"Simply limiting your options means you are more likely to avoid overeating," Young says.
3.) Put Healthy Stuff Front and Center
Another hack that can help put your goals first instead of your taste buds is to put the healthy stuff up front.
Out of sight, out of mind. And it works well.
“Keep nutrient-rich foods like fruits, veggies, string cheese, and yogurt at the front of your refrigerator so they are easiest to grab,” suggests Amy Goodson, a registered dietitian. If the healthiest choice is up front, it's likely that you will choose that.
4.) Fill That Spice Rack
Something that really sparked my love for cooking my own foods was the spice rack.
Having a good collection of spices helps you change up flavors without adding calories. Sauces and toppings generally have a lot of calories so if you want to skip the calories but keep the flavor, spices are where it's at.
Something that's helped me with meal prep is to cook a fair amount of your protein, but putting different seasonings on each one. I cooked a pack of chicken breasts and have 3 different flavors for the week so I won't get burned out.
Use your imagination and try new flavors.
5.) Buy Single-Serve Portions
Foods that are nutritionally dense but have a lot of calories can be hard to eat just one portion.
You know how easy it is to polish off a bag of chips or a tub of hummus, right? Instead of completely cutting out things you can't control, buy the single-serve sizes to train your brain.
It is a temporary solution that will cost a little bit more in the beginning, but what's a few dollars to giving you lifelong healthy habits?
6.) Portion out Tempting Foods
We all have something we like that we shouldn't eat a lot of. Whether it's a family-sized bag of pretzels, white cheddar popcorn, or some Cheez-Its, you can create your own single-serve portion sizes.
Make it a habit to break out the sandwich baggies to portion out your favorite snacks immediately after you unload your groceries. Eat a few pieces while you are portioning them out - it will help you keep portions in check.
You will be able to enjoy your favorite treat for days instead of one night of binge-watching Netflix.
7.) Look Into an Oil Mister
When you start cooking foods, you'll be using oils and other fats to cook with. Buying an oil mister for sauteing your veggies, eggs, or salad dressings helps keep your fat intake down.
Read the direction to find out how many sprays your mister takes per teaspoon or tablespoon. Take the guesswork out of getting healthy.
8.) Watch Eating Family-Style
Nothing is better than sitting around a table with your family and friends, having a Thanksgiving-like table set up just asking to be dug into.
It's really easy to get seconds or thirds if the food is sitting there with a spoon in it to serve with. Instead, make your plates in the kitchen - leaving the table will add enough resistance that you will think about getting up to get more.
Putting up the leftovers before you eat can also help you from standing in the kitchen and eating straight out of what you cooked it in.
Trust me, I know the struggle.
9.) Try Doing Meal Prep While You Watch TV or Listen to Music
It's hard to find time to meal prep, but if you combine it with your nightly TV habit, you can have fun and set yourself up for success.
Try to cut veggies and create your meals during commercials, turn the TV towards your kitchen, or bring your laptop to the kitchen and prep for the entirety of your show.
10.) Leave Yourself a Note
I know you've seen a show or movie where someone wishes they could go back in time to warn themselves about something.
This is your chance.
Stress and boredom eating are hard to combat, but leaving a reminder can help you stop and think about why you are eating. The goal is to limit mindless eating here.
Your notes can say anything you'd like - mine can be pretty mean, but they are effective.