My No. 1 rule when it comes to healthy, balanced, lasting weight loss: Eat what you actually want to be eating! This doesn’t mean eating pizza and burgers all day long (in the sense that you may be thinking); what it means is finding healthier and satisfying alternatives to your absolute favorite dishes that make you feel happy and excited to eat them.
When it comes to weight loss, it seems like we have been taught that food is the enemy and it’s not something to really be "enjoyed." I believe that’s how the industry is keeping us overweight, unhealthy, and unhappy. Food is meant to be loved, enjoyed, and fun!
If we suck the enjoyment out of it by going on a restrictive diet, it’s no wonder we fall off the wagon (I have tried this method many, many times, winding up in an awful cycle of dieting, bingeing, going "off" my diet until I can’t take it anymore, starting the diet "over" or starting a new diet, and repeating the process). All it did was leave me miserable, frustrated, and hopeless (and definitely not any leaner)—sound familiar?
Figuring out that I can still have the same type of meals that I love and have always loved, enjoy the heck out of them, and lose weight/maintain weight loss has been the key to finally reaching success on my weight-loss journey. Now I am happy, healthy, and actually enjoy eating again and can rest assured that the weight I’ve lost is never coming back.
Here are five of my absolute favorite recipes that helped me shed 75 pounds and not ever feel restricted. They are all healthier/lightened-up versions of some of the comfort foods from my youth that totally satisfy those cravings.