Losing weight is not just about dieting, according to everydayhealth.com. More important are making lifestyle changes that can be helpful for losing weight and keeping the weight off.


Healthy and sustainable weight loss does not occur overnight, despite the promises of fad diets. Losing a pound or two a week is normal, and shows that you are adopting weight-loss habits as a part of your lifestyle.


Here are some simple strategies.


1. Watch Your Portions


Portion control is a key challenge to Americans pursuing weight loss. Start with small portions, and go back for (a little) more if you’re still hungry. Keep in mind that your stomach will grumble early on, until it has shrunk to adapt to the smaller meals you’re now eating.


Portion control is doubly important when eating out.


2. Eat Slowly


It takes a little while for your body to realize that you’ve eaten and to stop sending signals of hunger. If you slow down and savor your food, you probably will eat less before your body acknowledges that you’re full.


3. Eat Your Vegetables First


Vegetables contain plenty of fiber and bulk but few calories. By eating them first, you might eat less of any fatty or high-calorie items on your plate.


4. Don’t Skip Meals


Skipping meals sounds like a good idea, but it actually undermines your weight-loss plan. Your body thinks it is being starved and starts building body fat in an attempt to store energy away for later. The best course is to eat three small meals, with two or three small snacks in between.


5. Drink Plenty of Water


Water helps you feel full throughout your day, aiding your weight-loss efforts. Water also provides innumerable health benefits to your skin and your digestive and circulatory systems.


6. Switch to Healthy Snacks


Swap out the high-calorie or high-fat snacks in your diet for healthier alternatives, like fruit, low-fat string cheese, peanut butter, and whole-grain crackers. Create snacks that combine carbohydrates and proteins, like peanut butter on apple slices, as they will make you feel full longer.


7. Exercise as Often as You Can


Burning calories through physical activity is essential to weight loss. If you don’t burn more calories than you eat, you won’t lose weight.


8. Keep a Record


Food diaries are a proven aid to people pursing weight loss. Keep track of what you’ve eaten and how many calories the food contained. If you also keep a record of your exercise, you can compare how many calories you’re burning to how many calories you’re consuming.