Tips on How to Get Healthy Without Going on a Diet

Most of us have been on a diet or two, but are diets really a sustainable way of achieving a healthy weight? 

Dr Rick Kausman believes we should get off the diet ‘roundabout’ and instead focus on wellbeing, not weight loss.
“I’m not against someone losing weight if they’re above their healthy weight, but only bad things happen when we  focus on weight, or weight loss,” Dr Kausman says.
 
“Research shows a third to two thirds of people end up being at a higher weight after they dieted than before they started, so something they have tried to change with the best of intent has ended up in a situation that is actually worse for them.”

If not dieting, then what? 

Dr Rick Kausman asks just that question in his latest book, and suggests we ditch the diets and try the following tips: 

1. Mindful eating

Eat slowly and with awareness to restore your body’s “tremendous ability” to tell you when you’re hungry or full.
 
Mindful eating can also help you curb “non-hungry eating”, such as the eating you do when you’re bored, stressed or upset.
 
Before you eat, check in with your body by asking yourself, “Am I really hungry?”

2. Move often in ways you enjoy

Choose physical activity you will enjoy, not just endure, to keep your body moving.
 
Find easy and practical ways to move more each day, such as walking to the shops instead of driving or taking the stairs rather than the lift.
green smoothie

3. Don’t brand food ‘good’ or ‘bad’

Eat fruit and vegetables because you enjoy the taste, not because you are being ‘good’. Labelling a food ‘bad’ can lead to feelings of guilt and even make us eat more of it. 
 
Dr Kausman suggests eating for health could instead involve ‘everyday foods’ and ‘sometimes’ foods.

4. Be kind and nurturing to yourself

Make a list of healthy things that help you feel good, and try to do these as often as possible. You will find plenty of ideas on The Bupa Blue Room
 
Also, focus on feeling good rather than concentrating on the digits on the scale. “Health and vitality come in all types of body shapes and sizes.  Remember that nobody is perfect, and no body is perfect!” says Dr Kausman. “It's not a matter of willpower, but of having the right strategy to help support us to be the healthiest we can be – and dieting is not that.”
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