Diet Tips for Fat Loss

nutrition planTime for some diet tips for fat loss, and these killer ideas come mostly from the TTMembers forum. Very cool group of people on that site.

One day, I read an article about binge eating, and knowing that portion control is a HUGE component of fat loss success, I went straight to the forum with this question…

How do you control your portion sizes so that you don’t overeat?”

Now I knew one tip…and it was that “Smaller plates are proven to help control portion sizes”. Whether you are at home or at a restaurant, simply use smaller plates and bowls. That was easy.

But what else is there? How can we control portions at meals? Because if we can do that, we can enjoy our favorites a little more often – just in smaller portions.
So here’s what TT members had to say…and if you have a tip, just leave a comment below.
1. Portion foods into bowls rather that eating straight out of the trail mix dietbag. ie. nuts, trail mix, etc.

2. Eat smaller, more frequent meals.
Says member “MGags”, “I know some people view it as a pain, but eating smaller ‘meals’ every 2-3 hours help me keep my portions at lunch and dinner smaller. I’m not nearly as hungry so I’m not tempted to load my plate up with more food than necessary.

Since I’ve started TT and eating more meals per day, I’ve never had ‘seconds.’ I think this was one of my problems that lead to my weight gain. I’d almost always have seconds, especially for dinner, and feel bloated after eating.

3. Fill up on fiber.

Says one member, “Eat a snack that has a good portion of fiber with a glass of water about 30 minutes before a meal.”
And another says, “If I get home from work and am really really hungry, such that I would easily overeat before I would know that I am full, I will first eat either an apple or a big bowl of salad.
“I usually make 1 huge green salad a week and keep it in a stainless steel bowl covered lightly with aluminum foil and it keeps well. This helps a lot to have it pre-made and it is easy to “snack” on.”
lunch-lady4. Have someone else control your portions.

That’s a unique, but cool tip. As member “groteusmaximus” said, “This one ties in with your social support element: Have someone else portion your food at mealtime.
“I talked to my wife and asked her for help. She makes sure to serve me the same amount that she serves herself. Being that she’s one of those skinny chicks who couldn’t gain a pound at a donut giveaway, she likes to eat and serves a decent portion. So I’m never hungry after a meal, but never overfed either.

5. Don’t serve food from serving bowls on the table.

Also from GMax, “Bowls on the table encourage seconds. Fix your plate in the kitchen, and when its gone, its gone.”

6. Pack Your Lunch When You Are NOT Hungry lunch

GMax says, “As for eating during the day, I pack my lunch early in the am, before my hunger kicks in. For those who workout early, make your meals & snacks the night before, right after you eat dinner. When you’re full, you make smaller portions for yourself.”

Very good tip!

7. Measure your foods.

I’m not a big fan of measuring foods, since it’s a little too “controlling” for me, but it works great for a few TTMembers who said, “I try to keep any starchy food to no more then my fist size.”


“I measure certain foods. For instance breakfast is measured out with a measuring cup, I count out my almonds, I occasionally weight foods to better understand portion sizes.”


“And I find logging my food intake on FitDay also makes me more aware of how much of what I am eating.”

Great tip…I’m a big fan of having folks record their food for a while until they get a good idea of how many calories are in certain foods.That’s a huge key to success in a fat loss transformation.

Let me know your diet tips for fat loss success (in comments below) and how you control portion sizes and eliminate binge eating.The simpler the tip, the better!

Diet remains the key to fat loss,

Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS

Click here to “try out” Turbulence Training risk-free

  • Hi Craig!

    I’d say make sure you have stocked up with high quality food wherever you know you’ll need it! Home, workplace, vacation location…because what you have is what you’ll eat, right?

    That way you can be sure to have plenty of veggies, fruits and whole foods and “crowd out” (as I like to say) the other stuff! As a matter of fact, that’s why a small plate doesn’t work for me – I need a big one to hold the pile of greens along with everything else.

    Oh – and enjoy what you eat! That’s numero uno!

    Lani Muelrath

    • Craig Ballantyne

      Really great tips…don’t let the junk in the house…and keep those fresh fruits and vegetables coming!

  • seriously for anyone starting to get diet in check they must must must right down what they eat. I have found that for some strange reason, people naturally misjudge what they’re eating day to day, and when they’re writing things down, they are forced to acknowledge it. It’s not just that simple though, even when writing things down people are inclined to lie or underestimate portions. But recognizing that alone, through the exercise of keeping a journal is a really great step in understanding how to actually be conscious of what you’re eating.

    • Craig Ballantyne

      essential tip. like you, i can’t emphasize that enough…thanks for the reminder!

  • I simply eat slower and focus on what I’m eating. I can’t really go into detail on this because I got the idea from ancient meditators talking about being “conscious”, but the idea is very simple.

    When you eat, eat slowly and THINK about the food you’re eating. Kind of watch yourself eat, if you can understand what I mean. Not only will eating slowly help you feel full quicker (it takes time for your digestive system to catch up), but by eating “consciously” your body automatically will eat healthier foods and smaller portions.

    I’m going to have to write a blog post about that over at, but it’s a really cool way to eat smaller and more healthy portions 🙂

    Jeremy Reeves

    • Craig Ballantyne

      That’s a great tip…really ties into the fasting angle too of getting the power OVER food and having more control rather than wolfing it down and always being thinking about food. totally different mindset…thanks Jeremy!

  • I found a unique way to control portions. By using high-protein, high-fiber tortillas I easily control the amount of food consumed during one meal (only what fits in the tortilla when folded like a burrito) without feeling hungry afterwards. Fill them with lean proteins, fruits and vegetables – they are low GI, keep you satisfied and regular. They also help people get past the “I must eliminate bread” misery usually associated with diets, and they are the ultimate in portability!

  • Wazzup
  • ruth

    My tip is to get yourself Metabolic Typed, can be done usingan online questionnaire and it takes the guess work out of dieting. You get a food list suitable for YOUR body and YOUR metabolism, no weighing, no calorie counting, no processed shakes and bars instead of meals, just good old fashioned unprocessed foods.
    Check it out on my blog :

  • Not a very green solution, but Ziplocs in every shape and size. Whether it’s a serving size of raw almonds, veggies for on the go, grilled chicken in the ounces you want to eat in one sitting, or whey protein for a trip they really work. The generic versions are not expensive and they transport easier than plastic containers. Makes a huge difference for us.

    • Craig Ballantyne

      I think that is a great tip Kelley, thank you!

  • Denise

    The success is in the planning. If you pack you lunch and snacks, you won’t be tempted to run to the snack machine or buy an unhealthy lunch out.

    • Craig Ballantyne

      Very true Denise, great point!

  • Laura

    1. Don’t eat unless you’re sure it’s hunger and not appetite. If it’s hunger, broccoli will sound as appealing as pizza. If it’s appetite, it won’t .

    2. Don’t cultivate a “deprivation mindset” by focusing on all the foods that are off limits. Instead, focus on all the delicious healthy foods you CAN have, and also on how great you feel when you nourish your body properly.

    • Craig Ballantyne

      Very interesting Laura, I’ve never heard that first one before!


  • Rocknrollgoddess

    I think that its important to ONLY eat when you feel true hunger and make sure you have food in the house ready for a meal/snack that can be thrown together in less that a few minutes….

    Also, whenever i am hungry–i drink a big glass of water first to ensure its not just thirst–then, i eat a piece of fruit–then a bit later, i eat either a green salad or some veggie soup–and then i have my protien/carb meal–this is kind of like using food combining…but drinking the water and eating the fruit takes the edge of my hunger and i am able to prepare a healthful meal that way instead of grabbing whatever…

    i also think that ESE gives you such control over food that you can WAIT until you can get an appropriate meal because you are not afraid of “starving” and hunger…:)

  • WATER: Many times we confuse hunger for thirst.. most people walk around dehydrated snacking on processed junk only robbing the body of more water and crucial vitamins and minerals. Next time you feel the hunger pang and your in between meals, drink a full glass of filtered water and check back in with yourself.

  • Isabel De Los Rios

    Definitely no snacking while on the computer, reading or doing anything that draws your attention away from what you are snacking on. I have had many clients tell me they went through a whole bag of trail mix without even knowing it while they were working on their computer.


    • Craig Ballantyne

      Thanks Isabel!

      Ironically, i’m reading your post while snacking – but i poured my amonds and peanuts into a bowl.

  • Another tip is to plan to cheat. We have a small Italian place that makes fantastic strombolis. If I am going to eat off-plan, that’s what I am likely to target. So I plan it ahead of time. That way it doesn’t happen to me on a whim, I can plan it for right after a workout so my body can handle the bread, and it also helps keep me compliant with my regular nutrition goals.

  • Some foods can really stimulate appetite and make it very hard to lose weight because your body will basically scream at you to eat, driving you crazy and making control even harder. Anything sugary, even fruit, can do that for many people it seems. I used to get so hungry after eating a cereal and milk breakfast even if the bowls were overflowing and the calories were high (I’ve been a strict calorie counter using scales for years – works well if you stick to it). I would be hungry within an hour. Now I eat meat with a decent amount of fat and low glycemic vegetables for breakfast and I can go without eating for hours without discomfort.

  • I only buy bread/cheese when I’m having guests. Same with butter, sugar, milk; these things have not been part of my regular diet for years.
    Also, I try to eat a lighter dinner; less protein, small amount of carbs if any; in winter I might have soup for dinner, in summer grilled or steamed veggies/brown rice sushi. Currently the grain I eat most is quinoa; light and packed with nutrition. I happen to love vegetables!