Surely at the top of most guys’ list of health and fitness resolutions for 2018 is the objective to lose a few pounds (or maybe more?!). Like every endeavor in life, it’s best to proceed in an intelligent manner. Starving yourself and yo-yo dieting can harm your body, slow down your metabolism, and leave you heavier than before you started. Begin by following some sensible eating tips that will guarantee a slimmer, healthier you in 2018.

Tip No. 1: Drink plenty of water. People can confuse thirst with hunger, so you can end up eating extra calories when a tall cold glass of water is all you need.

Tip No. 2: Cut back on nighttime eating. Mindless eating before you go to bed is a sure way to gain weight big-time. Try not to eat within 2-3 hours before bed-time. If you must eat something, try eating an apple or a scoop of low-fat frozen yogurt.

Tip No. 3: Eat 4 – 5 mini meals or snacks and enjoy most of them earlier in the day while you are still active. Eating this way, you will find that you are not as hungry during the day, and less likely to binge at night.

Tip No. 4: Eat protein at every meal. Protein is more satisfying than carbs and keeps you feeling full longer. It’s also essential for maintaining and building muscle mass, and burns fat.

Tip No. 5: Stock the pantry with healthy, convenient foods. Having ready-to-eat, low calorie snacks and simple meals protects you from eating fast foods. Here are some great ideas: frozen veggies, whole grain pastas, reduced fat cheese, bags of salad, canned tomatoes and beans, pre-cooked, grilled chicken breasts.

Tip No. 6: Order children’s portions at restaurants. I know this sounds silly, but regular restaurant portions are killers for your waistline.

Tip No. 7: Exchange a cup of pasta or piece of bread for a cup of vegetables. Simply by eating less starches and more vegetables, you can lose a pants size in a month!

Tip No. 8: Always eat breakfast.  To lose weight and keep it off, always make time for a substantial morning meal, like fresh fruit, yogurt, high fiber cereal, and low- fat milk. Skipping breakfast causes your body to store fat and leads to binge eating later in the day.

Tip No. 9: Include fiber in your diet. Fiber aids digestion, prevents constipation, lowers cholesterol and helps with weight loss. Most women require 25 grams of fiber daily and most guys should start with 38 grams daily. Good fiber sources include oatmeal, beans, whole grain foods, and a variety of fruits and vegetables.

Tip No. 10: Understand portion sizes. To right-size your meals, use a kitchen scale and measuring cup to measure your meals for a week or two. Use smaller plates and glasses to downsize portions.