Six secrets to dieting success

Victoria TaylorOur dietitian Victoria Taylor reveals the secrets of getting to a healthy weight, and staying there for the long term.

January 2, 2013

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When January rolls around, it’s tempting to get stuck in to the latest faddy diet. They often promise miraculous levels of weight loss – but often leave your tummy rumbling, which can lead to flagging energy levels.

But quick fix ideas like skipping meals or only eating grapefruit aren’t just boring and unsustainable – they’re actually unnecessary.

It is possible to eat a varied, tasty, healthy diet that gets you all the nutrients you need, and lose weight and keep it off. Sceptical? Take a look at our Battle of the Diets video to find out just how much better our way looks, and tastes!

Follow my top 6 tips for long term, sustainable dieting success:

1. Find out if you need to lose weight, and if so, how much you need to lose

Work out your BMI – it can help you figure out whether you are overweight, the ideal weight, or underweight for your height. Use our handy tool to find out your result:

It’s also important to work out your waist size. People who carry too much fat around their waist are at greater risk of heart disease. If you don't have a tape measure, you can get one free by joining our free Heart Matters service for people who want to know more about looking after their heart.

Men are at increased risk of health problems at 37 inches (35.5 for South Asian men) and women are at increased risk at 32 inches.

2. Have regular, balanced meals

Keep to a regular meal pattern and reduce your calorie (energy) intake by cutting down on food and drink that's high in fat and / or sugar. Include plenty of fruit and vegetables. These are low in calories and contain fibre which will help you to feel full. Make sure your meals have the right balance of all the food groups so that you get all the nutrients you need for good health.

3. Plan your portions

Our So you want to lose weight...for good booklet can help you take a good look at the way you eat and help you adjust your portion sizes, if necessary, while still maintaining a balanced diet.

4. Exercise

Being physically active helps to keep your heart healthy and will also burn up some extra calories. Why not plan to take part in one of our walking, running, cycling or swimming events? Get training and gradually build up the amount and intensity of exercise you do.

5. Don’t keep it to yourself

Sharing your goals with your friends, family or partner, and keeping a diary of your progress and setbacks can help you keep on track.

6. Do keep it slow and steady

We recommend a slow and steady approach to weight loss. Losing one to two pounds (between half a kilo and one kilo) a week is a safe and realistic way to keep them off for good.

For more help with this and other New Year’s resolutions, why not order a New Year, New You Pack.