Determine how many calories you need to sustain YOUR GOAL WEIGHT with an online calorie calculator. Enter gender, age, frame size, height, activity level and the WEIGHT YOU WANT TO WEIGH, not the weight you are now. This calorie amount will allow you to eat a satisfying amount of food. Your weight loss will slow down as you near your goal weight. When you reach your goal you will have learned how much you can eat to maintain your ideal weight. You may need to tweak your calorie needs up or down as the calorie counter is an estimate and your personal needs may vary.
*KEEP A FOOD DIARY, online or paper.
*Use convenience foods, it's healthier than being overweight.
*Eat what you want (ANYTHING!) as long as you know how many calories it contains AND you write it down in your food diary AND you don't go over your maximum calories allowed for the day.
*Don't cook huge meals of foods you love and that leave a lot of irresistible leftovers.
*Again, choose foods with clear serving sizes and calorie counts. This helps you feel in control when you eat something you have considered 'forbidden' in the past. Feeling out-of-control may trigger a binge.
***THIS IS KEY! Have a wide selection of your favorite food choices ON HAND that are ready-to-eat or quickly prepared. They should be portion-sized and you should know the calorie count. You need to do this to effectively deal with impulse eating or 'too tired and hungry to cook' eating.
*Work any food cravings into diet. Again, figure portion size and calorie count. If possible, use already-prepared single-serving-sized entrees when eating 'trigger' foods.
*Don't 'waste' calories on foods you don't really want because you think they are healthy or 'just because they're there'.
*All foods are permitted!
*2 cheat meals a month, preferably restaurant meals with no leftovers.
*KEEP A FOOD DIARY!