Slow down! Speeding through meals could be a ticket to stronger cravings and extra helpings. Women who took 29 to eat not only consumed fewer calories but also felt more satisfied than when they ate in only nine minutes, a study from the University of Rhode Island in Kingston notes. To hit the brakes, rest your fork or sip water between bites.
2. Reduce stress levels
Relax, already. Feeling harried? Log some couch time, or set aside a few moments to breathe deeply -- whatever helps you chill out. Some relaxing every day can lower stress hormones that may spur overeating, a study from Harvard Medical School finds.
3. Lower your MSG intake
RIP, MSG. On this plan, you'll eat plenty of fresh, whole foods, but sometimes you need to reach for premade eats, for whatever reason. When you do, limit those with monosodium glutamate (MSG). The flavour enhancer may interfere with your body's ability to regulate appetite. Watch out for monosodium glutamate on labels, or hydrolyzed soy protein or autolyzed yeast, both of which contain MSG.
4. Weigh your success
If you have a scale, use it! Dieters who weighed themselves at least weekly lost more weight than those who didn't, according to research from the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation. (Whether you step on the scale once a week or more frequently, weigh yourself in the buff and at the same time of day on the same scale for consistency.) Seeing the numbers plummet can be a great motivator, but it shouldn't be your only one. Because the scale doesn't account for lost inches and gains in lean muscle, also pay attention to how your clothes fit, how you look in the mirror and how energized you feel.