This page contains affiliate links. Please see my full disclosure policy here.
“One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.Luciano Pavoratti
When you’re trying to get into shape, especially if you’re 50 or over, one or more issues can be preventing you from success.
First, is your mindset and habits, which I’ve dealt with here.
That’s really the most important part to get right first. But, if you’ve got that taken care of, or at least working on it, next up is your food.
As in, what to eat, when to eat it, how much to eat, and how the heck to keep up with everything when you’ve got so much else to do??!!
And maybe you don’t like to cook! (I’ll help you learn to love it).
Here’s the thing. You don’t have to cut out any food groups, including alcohol, treats, potatoes, meat, grains, etc.
You certainly can choose to eat vegetarian, vegan, “clean,” gluten-free, Mediterranean, or whatever else sounds awesome to you. But you don’t NEED to do any of those things to be able to lose or maintain your weight.
Of course, choosing healthier foods like vegetables, fruits, lean protein, healthy fats, etc. is the best course for most of what you eat.
But if you like to have a glass of wine a couple times a week, and savor a treat now then, by all means do so. As long as you practice portion control, you can eat pretty much whatever you want.
So what about portion control? What does that mean?
Well, there are fairly well-established guidelines for what constitutes a “serving” of various foods. If you can keep these in mind, and/or purchase some specially designed containers, you can go a long way to keeping your weight in check.
These little containers are very handy. I’ll admit when I first bought them a few years back, I was completely SHOCKED at how small they were! But trust me, you can get pretty good at stuffing things into them. 🙂
And if you DO want to explore something like vegan cuisine, I can highly recommend Hello Nutritarian without reservation! Not only is Kristen’s website extremely helpful if you want to try a no animal products, no oil diet, it’s one of the most beautiful sites I’ve ever seen.
You almost can’t believe how gorgeous food can be until you check out some of her pages. And her recipes are amazing as well.
Kristen also has a Nutritarian Power Prep Program, which is very reasonably priced at $59, extremely thorough, and includes a Facebook group to keep you accountable and help you through any difficulties you may have.
Another protocol that is worth checking into is Dr. John McDougall, who also promotes no animal products and no oil. He is a (now retired) medical doctor specializing in internal medicine. I’ve used his program and recipes many times over the past 30+ years and I lose weight without fail.
One thing I LOVE about Dr. McDougall is he doesn’t shy away from potatoes, which I adore in nearly all forms.
Dr. McDougall recently retired after decades of working at his clinic in Santa Rosa CA, helping sick people back to amazing health.
Besides his website, linked above, a great introduction to all things McDougall is his 2013 book, The Starch Solution.
But I digress. My point is this. You don’t have to follow a strict vegan diet, or any other kind of strict diet, as long as you focus on real, whole food. Eat lots of vegetables, fruit, whole grains, and yes, starches (root vegetables, beans, corn).
I don’t recommend keto, but I know people can be totally partial to this or that diet that has worked for them. If it works for you (long-term) I’m not gonna tell you to stop (as if you would).
I think paleo is extremely faddish, and cuts out whole food groups like grains. But again, if you want to do that, go ahead. Just make sure you’re not fooling yourself into thinking you can gorge on fatty meat and nuts all day long and be healthy (or slim).
Of course, there are many, many other ways of eating you could follow, like Whole 30, raw foods diet, the D.A.S.H. diet (which I think is quite good). Anything by Dr. Dean Ornish or Dr. Joel Fuhrman is also a good choice. Both of these medical doctors recommend diets more or less the same as Dr. McDougall.
So if food intake is your biggest challenge in becoming the fit, awesome 50+ woman you are meant to be, hang out in the meals category where I will be continually updating with articles, recipes, meal plans and more!
And be sure to join the Facebook group!