A Healthy Resolve: Part Two-B

haf2Yesterday, we introduced idea of not dieting, and eating healthy amounts. Today we’re going to discuss how.

The non-diet

Be careful not to buy into the diet scheme (remember, people who create diet plans make a ton of money off the people who use their plans). Diets are generally meant to be short term in order to help a person reach their “magic” number, but once a person stops dieting, they will usually gain most, if not all, of their weight back. In order for weight loss to be permanent, a healthy lifestyle—and diet—must be maintained. Yes, weight loss is generally slower without a specific diet plan, but it is also healthier, and much more long term.

I have found that the easiest way to eat healthy is to simply get rid of junk food. Talk to your parents if you’re still living at home, and ask them to help you throw out the junk, or to at least stop buying it once it’s gone. If they’re unwilling to do this, talk to them about your favorite junk foods, and ask them to support your desire to be healthier by no longer buying your favorite treats. (If they really want to treat you to something, they can buy you nail polish or bubble bath!)

Your family could keep items such as brownie or cake mix (or make-from-scratch ingredients) in the cupboard, so you can bake if you really have a craving for something sweet. You’ll find that you’re probably much less likely to go to the work of baking something, than you would be to run to the cupboard and grab a pre-packaged cupcake or two. The extra work will make you really consider if it’s worth it, and you’ll soon find that it usually isn’t. Plus, homemade goodies give you another option – sharing! If you bake brownies, you can save a few for your family, then make a couple of plates to take to various neighbors. The same works for cookies or cakes too. You can bake a cake in two small pans instead of one large pan, and take the other pan to a working mom at your church who may not have time to make homemade treats for her family very often.

haf1If you have a craving for ice-cream, go out for a cone, or purchase a pint of ice cream instead of a half- gallon. The same goes for a candy bar – instead of buying a whole package, purchase one of the smaller bars at the checkout counter.

We tend to think about and want the things we are depriving ourselves of, so allow yourself an occasional sweet treat to curb the craving. When the urge hits to enjoy sweets, think creatively about how to enjoy them without being tempted by the extra calories for several days afterward.

If you must

If you are very overweight, and constantly struggling with your eating habits, you may need to go on a healthy diet for awhile that will help you learn how to be aware of your food. Diets such as Weight Watchers may be a good option, since they don’t cut out any of the food groups, and they teach dieters how to become conscious of their eating habits, plus the optional weekly meetings and weigh-ins help to keep each person accountable to themselves. Before beginning any diet program, however, talk to your doctor and make sure the diet plan you’re thinking of is safe for you. Remember that the main goal in dieting is not just to lose weight, but to learn to make lifestyle changes, which will help you stay healthy in the long run.

Food of the month: Roast beef

Low in carbs, and high in potassium and protein, roast beef is a great food on those cold winter nights (or any other time of year!). An entire meal centered around roast beef only takes minutes to create, and makes the house smell wonderful for hours.

To cook this meal, melt 1 tablespoon of Crisco Shortening in a pan, then brown both sides of the meat on medium.  After roast is browned, carefully pour a cup or two of cold water into the pan (meat will steam), then add peeled carrots and potatoes around and on top of the roast. Throw a sliced onion over that, add salt and pepper, then pour more water in the pan until it’s about halfway up the roast. Place in a 325 degree oven for three to four hours. The roast is done when the internal temperature is 160 degrees, or when the center is tender and no longer pink.

haf3Serve with dinner rolls and milk, and have canned peaches or fresh fruit with low-fat frozen yogurt for dessert. For the entire meal, allow 30 minutes prep time, plus four hours cooking time.

Bonus: You can turn this meal into vegetable soup! After dinner, while the food is still warm, cut up the meat, carrots, and potatoes before placing them in the fridge, along with a container of the broth (if you used the broth for gravy, you could use beef bullion cubes for the soup instead). The next evening, put the broth, meat, and any canned vegetables you want into the mix (my family likes peas and corn). Then add your favorite spices and let the soup simmer for at about 30 minutes on the stove, or as long as you’d like in a crock-pot. Serve with your favorite bread, milk, and some thawed frozen berries on the side. Allow fifteen minutes prep time for this meal, plus 30 minutes cooking time.

Coming up…

Next month, we’ll talk about healthy ways to exercise, but for now, if you’ve resolved to lose a certain amount of weight, or to diet, reconsider your resolution. Think about throwing out your scale (or at least asking your mom to hide it from you), and eating healthier foods without dieting. There are many ways to change bad habits into healthy habits without dieting or feeling deprived, so think creatively, get your family (or roommates) involved if possible, and strive to make this year a year full of healthful choices. Remember that weight should not be the goal – being healthy should be our goal. Forget about your “magic” number, because when we’re eating properly and working to be healthy, a better number on the (occasional) scale will naturally follow.

By Davonne Parks


  1. Weight Loss Success says

    Hi there,
    Nice blog, I just stumbled on it and I’m already a fan

    I recently went down 30 pounds.
    If I can lose weight then any one can. Whatever you do, never give up!

    much thanks for reading,

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