If you want to change how you eat and what you eat for fat loss, better health status, to gain control or performance based goals, here are the methods I use that work:
1. Start acting and thinking like an ADULT when it comes to food choices. You are not a child anymore, kids see food and eat it without any consciousness. Start to plan and make conscious decisions around what you eat, food choices, meal timing, planning and preparation.
2. Clean out your pantry and fridge- any "junk" food needs to go, throw it out, give it to the neighbour, donate it somewhere, just get rid of it. You are more likely to eat it if every time you open the cupboard a packet of Oreos is staring you in the face saying "eat me"!
3. Have structured main meals - breakfast, lunch and dinner must have structure. Protein, vegetables, complex carbohydrates and a little healthy fats, in every meal and enough of it so it fills you up.
4. Use the palm of your hand to measure your serving size:
* PROTEIN (e.g. fish, chicken, beef, eggs, tofu, cottage cheese) 1-2 PALMS
* CARBOHYDRATES (e.g. potato, rice, pasta, fruit, oats, quinoa, barley, bread, legumes)
1-2 CUPPED HANDS or 1 if you are trying to reduce carbohydrates
* VEGETABLES (e.g. non-starchy, greens, capsicum, eggplant, brocolli, cauliflower, zucchini, peas, fennel, salad) 2 HANDS or at least half your plate
* FATS (e.g.) avocado, olive oil, tahini, coconut oil, chia seed, nuts, seeds, 1-2 THUMBS
5. If you stick to structured meals -3 a day, you will feel much more satisfied from eating real, whole food and be less likely to snack.
6. Plan your meal times- if you know you get hungry at 13.00, eat then. If you get the munchies at 17.00, instead of munching have 2 big glasses of water and eat your dinner then- have a proper meal. You decide your clock- not what you did when you were growing up or not what society tells you. You are allowed to change it to suit you, remember you are an adult!
7. If you didn't get the picture in the above points- here it is again. EAT REAL FOOD. This is what your body wants, and makes it work beautifully. Eat all the colours (fruit and vegetables) to get all the different micronutrients.
8. Another point on meal timing- have at LEAST 3 hours between food. Firstly to let it digest properly, to give your stomach a break and to keep the structure around your food. Even if you have to look at your watch so you know when you ate and keep your mouth closed for food for the next 3 hours (with the exception of water), then do it!! Remember ADULT thinking.
9. Take the time to plan your menu for the week (this is also good for the budget), then food shop appropriately and meal prep and couple of meals in bulk so you start the week off right and in control. If you have "no food" in the fridge and are starving throw together any loose vegetables chopped and make an omelette with cheese, it's a quick, easy, healthy, filling 5 minute meal- a life saver!
10. Drink water everyday. I personally drink 4L a day, I love water...this is not for everyone, but at least 2L + is a good place to start. Add another litre for every hour of exercise you do. A lot of times humans are actually dehydrated and you can mistake this dehydration or thirst for hunger, so it's another reason to stay hydrated. All these methods above take away any need for calorie counting, macro splits, food diaries etc. Just practise the basics, get it right consistently (for at least 6 months) and enjoy the transformation (both mind and body) along the way. I'm not saying it's easy- all good things that are worth doing, that take patience, consistency, determination and grit are never easy, but worth it in the end.