Nutrition Articles

Weight Loss Resolution? No Way!

Resolve to Change Your Habits

Page 1 of 3
Do yourself a favor this year…Do NOT resolve to lose weight.

Instead, pick two or three habits (encourage healthy eating and improved fitness) that could easily result in weight loss. Don’t know what to focus on? Well you have just enough time to find out. For the next week, faithfully use the Sparkpeople Food and Activity Tracker. Record the following:
  • The food (and how much) you eat – Weigh and measure everything
  • Every beverage you drink (juice, pop, coffee, tea, water, diet beverages)
  • When the eating episode occurred (the time you started and finished eating)
  • The location of the eating (kitchen, family room, restaurant, etc.)
  • Who did you eat with? (friends, relatives, yourself, co-workers, alone)
  • How you felt while eating (happy, sad, bored, depressed)
  • Any exercise you did
Once you have finished your record keeping, it is time to analyze the data. Hopefully you will make some startling discoveries about yourself and be ready to make some really informed decisions regarding the changes you will make in 2007.

Analysis #1: Do you meet your nutritional needs?
  • Are you getting 2 low-fat dairy products daily?
  • Are you consuming 6 ounces of lean meat or protein sources daily?
  • Are you getting 5 servings of fruits and vegetables daily?
  • Are you receiving 4-6 whole grain products each day?
Sparkstep: Including a variety of foods in your diet daily will provide your body with the numerous benefits of over 50 different nutrients. Keeping your body energized and strong will help you to stay motivated and encouraged. For many, using the Food Tracker on a daily basis and sticking to a calorie goal is extremely beneficial to weight loss.

Analysis #2: How are your foods prepared?
  • How many foods are fried?
  • How many foods are breaded?
  • How many food items are covered with a sauce?
  • How many servings of sweets do you have daily?
  • How many food items come from a box, package, or can?
Sparkstep: Overloading your body on these types of food can add unwanted fat, cholesterol, salt, sugar, and calories to your diet. Some small changes in this area can benefit not only your weight but also help lower the risk of heart disease, certain cancers, diabetes, and high blood pressure. 

Analysis #3: What beverage choices are you making?

  • How much water are you drinking daily?
  • How many cups of tea and coffee do you consume?
  • How many cans of diet drinks to you have?
  • How many sugar-sweetened beverages do you consume daily?
  • How much 100% fruit juice do you get each day?
Sparkstep: Keeping your body hydrated is key to your health. Try to drink 8-12 cups of water daily. 100% juice does contain some nutritional benefits, but the fiber has been removed, therefore, limit yourself to 1/2 Cup daily. Sweetened juice drinks, punches, fruit cocktails are loaded with sugar and unwanted calories, so avoid these whenever possible. Coffee, tea, and diet beverages are not the best sources of fluid for the body and should be used in moderation. Limit these to 1-2 choices daily.
Continued ›
Page 1 of 3   Next Page ›
Got a story idea? Give us a shout!

About The Author

Becky Hand Becky Hand
Becky is a registered and licensed dietitian with almost 20 years of experience. A certified health coach through the Cooper Institute with a master's degree in health education, she makes nutrition principles practical, easy-to-apply and fun. See all of Becky's articles.

Member Comments

    I stopped doing New Years resolutions years ago. Making a promise to stop doing something just because it is the first of the year is a bad idea. Anytime you make a promise to NEVER do something you set yourself up for failure just leaving yourself open to feel worse about yourself. Do a food plan because you are ready. Quit smoking when you are ready. Not because you make some silly promise that you tell everyone and then feel bad if you fail. Do things because they are good for you or make you happy and healthy. - 12/17/2015 9:19:14 PM
    Excellent article... Until I got to the $20- "treat yourself"! Please add..."to a pretty scarf, a new scent, etc". I started laughing because I completed the sentence by a food treat! - 12/17/2015 2:08:57 PM
  • I think this is the best article Becky has ever written! Food-tracking helps for a day, but until you learn to analyze what you do, it is hard to learn from your mistakes. Beck has spelled it out here! Thanks, Becky! - 12/17/2015 11:13:47 AM
  • Eating slowly is a good idea if you have the time. When I was a teacher, we had 1/2 hour for lunch. There was no time to linger and savor your food. If you didn't eat quickly, you didn't eat, especially if you were competing for use of the only microwave. - 12/17/2015 10:22:37 AM
  • SLIMAT125
    I appreciate the general theme - reform habits which lead to weight loss. - 12/17/2015 8:05:32 AM
    this is a great article, full of useful and practical tips! thank you - 1/11/2015 3:36:32 PM
    A good look and perspective on making resolutions. I appreciated the information, especially the part where eating faster can lead to eating more. - 12/27/2014 4:02:27 PM
    That's my goal foot 2015, write everything down that goes into this mouth, great idea . - 12/17/2014 7:00:46 AM
    Wonderful piece and worth repeating annually -- BUT - someone should have proofed it as it mentions to have a good 2007!!!

    Great articles - even if duplicated! Keep them flowing!! - 12/25/2013 9:46:59 PM
  • This article has given me some good ideas to put into practice next year. - 12/24/2013 1:42:41 AM
  • So sad that it closed with Happy 2007. There are SO MANY articles that are just recirculated, and not new ones... The least you can do is update the year:( - 12/23/2013 11:56:45 AM
  • Thanks for all the helpful Sparksteps... I'm pleased with the weight loss I accomplished this year but there's more to do in the year ahead - 12/23/2013 11:54:50 AM
  • In 2012 my resolution was to lose weight and reach my goal weight. With the help of SP I reached that goal and then some. You can make the lose weight resolution but be prepared for set backs and other nasty things to get in the way. I do agree a great article I am going to print it out and keep it posted on the frig. I do allot of them but there's one I really need to work on. How many sweets in a day; maybe two but I would like to go to none. - 12/23/2013 9:17:39 AM
  • Great article. - 12/23/2013 8:26:17 AM
  • Great article - 12/23/2013 7:29:53 AM

x Lose 10 Pounds by July 8! Sign up with Email Sign up with Facebook
By clicking one of the above buttons, you're indicating that you have read and agree to SparkPeople's Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy and that you're at least 18 years of age.