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Switching to fall meals: mistakes to avoid

February 1, 2024
6 min 35 sec
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Welcome to the season of cozy sweaters, colorful leaves, and pumpkin-spiced everything. 

As the temperatures drop, it's essential to stay warm both inside and out. While the fall season brings a beautiful change in scenery, it also introduces certain dietary challenges that can steer us away from our weight loss journey.

Fall is a time when we often find ourselves surrounded by tempting treats like pumpkin pies, caramel apples, and warm spiced lattes. The appeal of these comfort foods can make it easy to forget our diet goals. 

In this article, we'll explore the common dietary mistakes we make during the fall season that can modify our diet in undesirable ways. More importantly, we'll provide you with practical tips to stay on track and continue making progress towards your weight loss goals.

So, as we transition into the crisp and colorful days of autumn, remember that staying warm isn't just about bundling up in cozy blankets; it's also about maintaining your commitment to a healthy diet. Let's explore how you can navigate the fall food landscape while still making mindful choices.

Fall food temptations 🎃☕🥮🍞

One of the biggest challenges during the fall season is resisting the call of fall-themed treats. It's as if the world suddenly becomes a bakery, with the scent of cinnamon and nutmeg in the air. Pumpkin pies, apple crisps, and those tempting spiced lattes can make even the most dedicated dieters weak in the knees.

It's easy to give in to these temptations, but doing so can modify your diet in ways that lead to unwanted weight gain. The mistake many of us make is indulging in these calorie-laden treats without considering the consequences. While the occasional indulgence is perfectly fine, going overboard can slow down your progress.

Don’t worry, you can maintain your commitment to a healthier you by adopting a mindful approach. Instead of completely denying yourself these treats, plan for occasional indulgences. Allow yourself a small slice of pie or a pumpkin spice latte as a special treat, but don't let it become a daily habit. Remember, moderation is the key to losing weight.

Portion control

Let's talk about another common mistake many of us make during this season: portion control. As the weather cools down, our desire for heartier, more substantial meals tends to increase. This often leads to larger portions on our plates, which can modify our diet in ways we didn't intend.

To maintain your commitment to a healthier lifestyle, it's crucial to keep portions in check. Use this simple trick no matter where you are, and you won't have an issue:

  • Instead of piling your plate high with mashed potatoes or stuffing, use a smaller plate to help control portions naturally.
  • When it comes to protein, aim for a portion about the size of your palm
  • For vegetables, fill half your plate with colorful options like roasted carrots or Brussels sprouts. 
  • And when it comes to those beloved fall comfort foods, allow yourself a small serving rather than a mountainous one.

Another helpful tip is to savor your meals slowly. Eating too quickly can lead to overeating, as it takes time for your body to register that it's full. Enjoy the flavors of fall by taking your time and engaging in conversation during meals. This can help you stay warm in your commitment to portion control.

Healthy fall meal swaps

As we journey deeper into the fall season, let's explore some healthy meal swaps that can help your dedication to a balanced diet. Instead of succumbing to calorie-heavy options, opt for nourishing alternatives that satisfy your cravings without derailing your progress.

  • Swap out creamy soups for broth-based ones: Creamy soups may be comforting, but they're often loaded with calories. Choose broth-based soups with plenty of vegetables to stay warm while keeping your calorie intake in check.
  • Trade sweet potato fries for baked sweet potatoes: Sweet potatoes are a fall favorite, but when they're fried, they become calorie bombs. Baked sweet potatoes are just as delicious and offer a healthy dose of fiber and nutrients.
  • Choose lean proteins: When preparing fall meals, opt for lean proteins like turkey or chicken instead of fatty cuts of meat. This helps you stay warm in your commitment to a balanced diet while enjoying the flavors of the season.
  • Go light on the gravy: Gravy can add excess calories to your meal. Use it sparingly, or try making a lighter, homemade version to stay warm in your love for rich flavors.
  • Experiment with spices: Enhance the flavor of your fall dishes with spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. These aromatic additions can make your meals feel indulgent while keeping them healthy.

Remember that it's not about depriving yourself but making mindful choices that align with your weight loss goals.

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Practice mindful eating 

Let's delve into the concept of mindful eating. It's a powerful way to maintain a balanced diet and enjoy the flavors of autumn without overindulging.

Mindful eating means being fully present during meals. Instead of rushing through your plate, take the time to savor each bite. Pay attention to the textures, flavors, and aromas of your food. Engage all your senses in the experience.

One of the key aspects of mindful eating is listening to your body. Before reaching for seconds, pause and ask yourself if you're truly hungry or if you're eating out of habit or boredom

Another valuable technique is to eat without distractions. Turn off the TV, put away your phone, and sit down at a table to enjoy your meal. When you're fully engaged in your food, you're less likely to overeat.

If you find yourself tempted by a dessert, take a moment to evaluate your cravings. Are you genuinely craving a sweet treat, or are you looking for comfort? Sometimes, a warm cup of herbal tea can satisfy that need for comfort without adding unnecessary calories.

Remember, mindful eating isn't about strict rules; it's about developing a healthier relationship with food.

Self-hypnosis for healthy choices

Alongside the enchanting smells of fall treats, you have an ally in your quest for balanced nutrition and mindful eating: self-hypnosis. This simple yet effective technique has been scientifically proven to help you stay committed to making healthier choices when it comes to your dietary practices and food consumption, keeping you on track.

  1. Self-hypnosis promotes awareness: Self-hypnosis encourages deep self-awareness, making it easier to recognize cravings, emotional eating triggers, and habits that may derail your diet. When you're aware of your impulses, you can make more informed choices.
  2. Mindful eating amplified: Think of self-hypnosis as a magnifying glass for mindfulness. It enhances your ability to fully engage your senses during meals, just like we discussed in the previous section. You can savor each bite, appreciating the textures and flavors without feeling the need to rush.
  3. Reducing emotional eating: Many of us turn to food as a source of comfort when stressed or anxious. Self-hypnosis can help you manage stress more effectively, reducing the urge to use food as an emotional crutch. This empowers you to stay warm in your commitment to mindful choices.
  4. Reinforcing positive habits: Through self-hypnosis, you can reinforce positive eating habits. You can create mental anchors that make you naturally lean towards nutritious options and portion control, helping you stay warm in your dedication to a balanced diet.
  5. Curbing cravings: Self-hypnosis can be a powerful tool to reframe how you perceive certain foods. It can help diminish the intensity of cravings for calorie-laden indulgences, making it easier to choose healthier alternatives.

By incorporating self-hypnosis into your daily routine, you can amplify your decision to make better dietary choices. It's a gentle, natural approach that aligns perfectly with the warm and mindful spirit of the fall season. As you look over the Starbucks counter looking for your next fall treat, remember that self-hypnosis can be your secret weapon to stay fit until Christmas.

👉🏼Learn how it works in our Guide to Self-hypnosis

You can make your weight loss easier by using self-hypnosis. Start now and take advantage of the 7-day free trial offered by Oneleaf. 🌟

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