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How to Stay on a Diet

Expert diet tips to keep you from being a diet dropout.

Reasons for Diet Failure continued...

Diet Success Tip: You might not fit into those skinny jeans, but keep in mind that losing even a little weight goes a long way toward improving your health. Research has shown that losing 10% of your body weight (for example, going from 200 to 180 pounds) can have big payoffs for your health.

"Medically, 10% weight loss can lower blood pressure, cholesterol [and] triglyceride levels, improve glucose sensitivity and sleep apnea," says Wyatt.

In addition, it can help you feel better about yourself.

3.Dieting Without Exercise

Some people just don't like to exercise, or have physical limitations that prevent them from doing it. But if you don't want to be a diet drop-out, you need to find some form of physical activity you can do most days of the week.

"If there is one behavior that predicts weight loss success, it is being physically active on a regular basis," says Foster.

Further, physical activity brings many health and psychological benefits aside from weight loss.

Diet Success Tip: Exercise does not have to happen in a gym - try gardening, dancing, walking, bike riding, or playing tennis, whatever you enjoy. Start slowly and gradually increase your intensity. Check with your doctor if you have physical limitations. Working out in the pool, for example, cushions joints and adds the extra benefit of water resistance. One of the simplest and easiest ways to exercise is to trap on a pedometer and count your steps throughout the day, aiming for 10,000 each day.

4.Not Changing Your Environment

Willpower alone won't cut it. To be a successful loser, you need to create a diet-friendly environment at home, work, and socially.

"It is hard to continually push away from the wings at happy hour, candy on your desk, or a house full of temptations. If you want to succeed, you need to make changes in your environment so you are not constantly dealing with or resisting temptations," says Wyatt.

When you can't eat the same things as your friends, or your family doesn't support your weight-loss efforts, this makes dieting more difficult, says Champagne.

Diet Success Tip: Seek support from your family, friends, and co-workers. And, Wyatt suggests, remove temptations wherever you can. Stock your kitchen with nutritious foods so you have ingredients on hand for healthy meals and snacks. Take nutritious snacks and meals with you when you're on the go so you'll be prepared when hunger strikes. Remove the candy dish from your desk, skip happy hour with your friends -- do whatever it takes to set yourself up for success, even if it means hanging around with different friends.

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