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So back when I was a kid, the government used to have a food pyramid.  There were six servings of grains required every day, and as the pyramid ascended you could find meat, dairy, fruits, vegetables, and then fats at the top.  I guess somewhere in the last fifteen years, someone figured out that six servings of grains was a little bit ridiculous, and they got rid of the pyramid.

Now we have a plate.  Half of the plate should be fruits and vegetables, the other half is split between grains and protein.  You can check out this government website for more information:

http://www.choosemyplate.gov/index.html

This was the first step in adjusting my eating habits.  I realized that every time I got home and was too tired to cook, I made pasta.  Not even whole grain pasta, because I think it tastes a little icky.  I would grab one of the biggest bowls I could find and fill it with pasta and cheese and sit on the couch and stuff my face until I was full to bursting.

Talking with my nutritionist, this was my first goal for weight loss and healthy eating habits.  I always stick to the plate.  I eat off of 8″ plates, which are somewhat smaller than the traditional 10″ or 12″ plates.  It is a good way of tricking your brain into recognizing that you are full without eating portions that are too large.  Half of my plate is always fruits and vegetables.  It’s a lot easier than it sounds.  The other night I had a clementine and some steamed broccoli as my half plate of plant life.

The other half of the plate is easy, too.  I don’t follow the government picture of a floating dairy product next to the plate.  I incorporate it in my protein section.  The grain section can be as small as you want it to be.  Lots of fad diets say that you should eliminate the grain entirely, but giving up something is hard and you can’t stick with it.  Plus, grains are the tastiest foods.  I keep grains at a quarter or less of my total plate.  Sometimes I replace it entirely with proteins or vegetables, but I keep it in my head that a quarter of my plate is reserved for grains if I want it, so I’m not giving anything up.

I am almost three weeks into my diet plan at this point.  I don’t really want to call it a diet, since that word seems like a punishment for all of the things you give up and all of the meals you have to replace.  So let’s say I am three weeks into my new lifestyle, because this isn’t something I ever want to stop.

Thanks for reading.

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