If you are finding it hard to successfully lose weight and are a regular player in the game of crash dieting, making a few tweaks to your lifestyle could be the solution.

Below are five common mistakes people make in weight-loss:

Not planning ahead

Those unhealthy decisions and spontaneous trips to the vending machine happen when you have not prepared for the pesky 11am hunger pangs. It is recommended to plan ahead to help avoid any unhealthy snacking – sit down and plan your meals for the week, take your list to the shops and buy everything you need in order to successfully prepare your meals. ‘Meal prep’ means you have the food available when hunger strikes and you won’t be as inclined to nip out for that chocolate bar.

Too much or not enough protein

High protein diets are very popular and do offer results, but only short-term. Nutritionist Willow Jarosh explains how high protein or carb-free diets are not sustainable for the long-term because it misses out the vital nutrients our body needs. Fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds have the nutrients our body needs to stay happy and keep our digestion regular. On the other hand, a lack of protein in the diet can also lead to weight gain. Protein helps the body stay satisfied so it is important to be eating a source of protein at every meal.

Untitled design-2

Keeping it to yourself

If you do not tell people that you are adopting this healthy change, you may start to feel like your friends and family are unintentionally sabotaging you. Consider sharing your goals with them – you may find that your family, friends and co-workers are making the same changes. It is a lot easier to stay on track when you have the support of those around you.

Skip dinner for cocktails

It is widely known that drinking on an empty stomach can result in quicker intoxication, but even enjoying one or two drinks when skipping dinner can result in losing the ability to make that healthy choice. The guilt-free one glass of wine could be the reason you eventually order the whole bar menu – while it seems like a good idea at the time, the effects of this binge may result in you feeling rough and skipping that gym trip the next day!

Untitled design

Compensating food for exercise

Going to the gym in order to eat what you want, or convincing yourself that the work- out deserves a reward in the style of a take-out pizza may not be the best mindset to have. Having these thoughts when going to the gym may result in you developing an unhealthy relationship with food. On average, a half an hour run will burn about 250 calories – looking for an excuse to eat the whole 400-calorie dessert in your fridge can unsurprisingly lead to weight-gain. A balanced diet is best complemented with a workout, not as a compensation for unhealthy eating.