A meal plan diet is a healthy choice for long term weight loss. There are hundreds of diet plans to choose from. Some have weathered the test of time and others are just popping onto the horizon. If you’re like most people you have gone from plan to plan looking for the right one to fit you. The plan itself can be the biggest determinant of whether you lose weight or not. Regardless of what it promises, if it is poorly put together, you won’t lose weight. Run the other way when you see a diet plan that promises to lose weight quickly and easily. Weight loss is hard work; it takes discipline and determination. It is much harder to lose weight than it was to put it on. The most effective diet plan is one that allows you to lose weight and keep it off.
A meal plan diet has many advantages:
Helps you to eat healthy. When planning meals, you pick foods from each of the required food groups to make up each meal. When you eat healthy, your body works better and learns how to burn fat more efficiently. When your metabolism increases, you burn more calories.
Gives you flexibility. You can vary the types of food you eat as long as you stay within the boundaries of the meal plan diet. Foods that on some diet plans might be called cheating, you can eat, because by incorporating some of these ‘wants’ into your meal plan, it just becomes part of the meal. You can’t have pizza every meal but you can make the plan a lot easier to stick with by including some of your favorite foods in moderation.
Helps with portion control. Many times we know how many calories we want to eat for the day but we struggle to get the right mix of nutrients. How many calories from fat, carbohydrates or fiber do we need? A well designed meal plan diet will plan all that out for you.
Saves money and time. By planning your meals ahead of time, you can save money at the grocery store by not buying food on impulse. You make your list and stick to it. Planning your meals also keeps you from eating fast food, even if you pick something off the healthy menu.
Most meal plan diets recommend that you eat several small meals throughout the day. This keeps your body’s metabolism running at a higher rate, thereby burning calories more efficiently. 5 meals made up of about 300 calories each gives most people the needed calories to stay healthy and feel full and just few enough to be able to lose weight.
A computerized meal planner is a valuable tool in a meal plan diet. It is not enough to know that we need to eat 1500 to 1800 calories a day. A meal planner will actually tell you what you should eat, how much of it to eat, and when to eat it.