A food journal makes you accountable
If I were to ask you right now what you ate for dinner four days ago it would take a while to think on it.
To get control of your weight and prevent pre-diabetes you must know what you have been putting into your mouth and track it. The best way I found to do this to do this is to keep a record of what you eat every day for two weeks. Just by monitoring your daily food intake with a diary can encourage you to eat fewer calories.
Your journal should be inclusive of everything from the amount of water you drink or the glass of wine you had at dinner to the chips and nuts you ate or the chicken wings you snacked on before bed. If you chew gum this should be recorded. Don’t rely on memory because your habits will cause you to forget.
Your journal will highlight the times you eat, what you ate and how much. If you are having a weight problem then this will pinpoint the main cause.
Once you have a ‘journaled’ of all the foods you have eaten for the last 14 days now it’s time to review the list to assess the quality of your diet and make the changes necessary to lose weight.
I was at least 20 pounds overweight and on track to become pre-diabetic if I didn’t make some fast adjustments in the way I ate and my lifestyle in general. I joined a gym so that I could become more active in a accountable environment and made friends there who later became workout partners. We were able to keep each other motivated.
Exercising for me was the was the easy part. Changing my diet took more discipline.
Before I got into a routine I had to train myself to get up fifteen minutes earlier to prepare my meals in the mornings and also fix a bag lunch of healthy food choices. In other words I had to learn how to eat all over again — eliminating poor food choices and replacing them with wholesome, nourishing foods. If I ate lunch or dinner out I would make smarter choices. I basically did the 3 week diet over a longer period. You can find out more about the it here.
I prepared my dinners a week in advance so I knew exactly what I will be having for the next five days. I gave myself one day per week to eat whatever I wanted . . . . within moderation. Eating a big meal before going to bed was one of my downfalls so now I finish dinner at least three hours before bed.
These changes did not come easy because I was set in my old habits and as you know it it takes a certain amount of discipline to break from a routine. However I was able to do this as a result of keeping a food journal.
I stopped recording my food intake after I got comfortable with a routine and have been able to maintain a consistently healthy diet going since. Once in a while I slip back to my old habits but on those occasions I don’t see it as a set back but a passing thing.
I recently read that it takes about three weeks of doing something for it to become a habit so if you can keep it going for that long you should be well on your way to meeting your goals of losing — and maintaining a consistent — weight.
You can get more information on weight loss by going to How to Prevent Pre-diabetes.