This is the time of year when many of us resolve to lose weight. But if the thought of another diet already has you going crazy, we found reaching your goal may not be all about what you eat, and more about your mindset.
From Paleo to low-carb, there is no shortage of diets to try if you want to lose weight or be healthier. But what if the best diet, isn't a diet at all.
"The non-diet approach is basically moving away from focusing on external cues in guiding our eating decisions," says Leanne Ray, a registered dietitian and founder of leanneray.com.
"So things like calorie counts and points values and instead moving towards internal cues. So kind of tuning into our body's own internal wisdom as to what we should be eating."
Ray says there are three food behaviors you can adopt instead of a traditional diet that you start and stop. First, shift the focus away from weight.
"I think that tends to be more of a distraction than a positive thing for people when they are going through this journey," Ray says.
Next, eat more mindfully.
"Being present in the moment learning how certain foods make you feel, how much energy they give you," Ray says.
And lastly, get out of the restaurant, and in the kitchen.
Ray says there are some foods that make for a balanced eating plan. First grains.
"I think whole grains are just really important because they are filling," Ray says. "They are full of fiber and they come with a lot of great vitamins and minerals."
And of course fruits and vegetables.
"I think it's important to find ones that you really like and enjoy and not just eat kale because that's the latest buzz food," Ray says.
Healthy fats and protein round it out, and you don't have to cut your favorite treat from the list.
"I don't think anything is an overindulgence," Ray says. "It's just a matter of making sure that you're really tuning in to how things are making you feel."
This way you're not giving up anything. There's no depravation, no resentment about what you can't have. Instead, a new appreciation about what you can.
"Take the stress out of eating bring it back to the basics," Ray says. "Get in the kitchen."