If you can put that fried snack down and turn away you have made a major breakthrough. It’s a bit like winning a match, or securing a plum job. The more you succeed, the more confident you become. And the more confident you get, the more likely you are to achieve victory!

12 TIPS TO TIP THE SCALES IN YOUR FAVOUR

1. Think thin

Think yourself thin and automatically you are channelling your energy in a positive direction. This has the most amazing results! When you think positive, you attain your goal in a single-minded, focused manner.

Remember it’s all about the feel good factor. So even if you do go off track occasionally, do not be consumed by guilt. Never say, “I’ve started to exercise, but so far I have lost only two pounds”, instead say, “I feel great after losing two pounds, now I am inspired to continue exercising”.

2. Don’t stress about being fat

Did you know, if you worry about being fat, you will be. Stress can lead to emotional eating, a factor that contributes to weight gain. There is a tendency to go for “comfort foods”, such as sweets or fried snacks and very often, the amount of food consumed goes up as well. This double whammy takes its toll and ultimately, shows up on your weighing scale.

3. Be assertive

Be firm with yourself. When you are about to give in to a craving, be assertive and get your mind obey.

4. Never finish the leftovers

Don’t treat each meal as it is your last supper. Refrigerate or distribute leftovers. Ask naturally slim people what they eat and you will get a consistent answer. They eat when they are hungry and stop when they have had enough.

5. When tempted to indulge, go brush your teeth

When your mind is about to give in to temptation, go brush your teeth. Not only does it works wonders, your craving will have passed!

6. Never shop for food when you are hungry

The surest way of going off your diet is to go to the supermarket when you are hungry. You will be tempted by the goodies available. Eat before you shop. Filling your trolley with indulgences is likely to happen on an empty stomach.

7. Learn the art of savouring food

If you eat slowly you’ll savour your food and relish your meal. Eating slowly not only helps to digest food better, but also prevents overeating.

8. Make smart food choices

Eat nutritious foods. Choose wholesome foods instead of packaged, refined foods. Be creative in your choices so that the food you eat is tasty as well as low in calories.

9. Think before you drink

When you drink, know you are consuming empty calories. If you wish to drink occasionally, add some more exercise for that day. Savour alcohol in small quantities instead of guzzling down your drinks. Mix your drink with carbonated water to cut back on calories. Alcohol consumption slows down the fat burning capabilities of the body. One gram of fat is 9 calories and alcohol is 7 calories per gram. Too much will inhibit your inhibitions, making you careless about what you eat.

10. Hydrate yourself

Drink at least eight glasses of water a day. Also eat high water content foods that will help you lose weight. Examples are watermelon, oranges, pineapples, tomatoes, and cucumber.

11. “Excuse proof” your exercise routine

Schedule “workout” in your daily planner. Find an exercise trainer or a workout buddy to help you stay committed. Make exercise an important a part of your daily life and write it down so that you are more likely to keep the “appointment”.

12. Reward yourself

Book yourself a relaxing massage or a spa treatment you enjoy. Buy yourself an outfit that looks good on you. Reward your efforts.

The writer is a certified Clinical Exercise Specialist, Lifestyle and Weight Management Specialist.