plate of salad on a wooden tableAchieving your fitness goals is only half the battle. For many staying shape is the real challenge. To avoid regaining the weight you’ve worked so hard to lose, you’ll have to devise a sustainable fitness plan and diet. Experts say this is how you should be eating:

Avoid diets that restrict entire food groups

If you remove carbs from your diet, skip whole meals, or starve yourself for a week or ten days, that would shrink a significant amount of body fat, sure. However, this form of self deprivation is not sustainable. Neither is it healthy. Crash diets can cause problems like dizziness, weakness, constipation and headaches. They can also lead to intense craving, feelings of guilt and stress.

woman doing a leg exerciseA better way to control the calories you take in is to eat smaller portions of balanced meals. According to a 2016 study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, your plate should be 35% fat, 35% protein and 30% carbs.  Choose fruit, vegetables, lean meats and good carbs like sweet potato. Finally, schedule two cheat days in a month.  Allow yourself to have some of your old favorites like cake or pizza once in a while. Eating habits trigger emotional and psychological responses. Alter your lifestyle in a way that doesn’t make you miserable.

Don’t use food to change how you feel

According to the American Psychological Association, 38% of adults in the United States have admitted to going on a food binge because of stress.  More alarming news: half of this group overeats weekly as a way to cope with life’s daily challenges.  This is called emotional or stress eating. It is not a response to feeling hungry or the body’s need for energy and nutrition. Rather, it is a quick fix during emotional lows.

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To stay in shape, a reassessment of your lifestyle is necessary. This includes a re-evaluation of not just your eating habits but also your workout routine as well. A personal training studio for women in Sudbury can help you devise a fitness program that shrinks fat and gains muscles, which in turn can cause the body to burn calories even faster.