We all know that when it comes down to it, there are two ways to lose weight – burn more calories or eat less of them. It sounds simple, right? So why is it so difficult to lose weight? Well, with my top 5 simple smart diet tips to cut calories there are no more excuses... follow these easy ways to lose weight and you’ll soon be on track to diet success and your perfect weight.

1 Snack Smart
To snack smart simply means opting for low fat, low calorie snacks like fresh fruit, low fat yoghurts, vegetable sticks, dried fruit and seeds, and rice cakes. Wholegrain cereal bars and soup or even cereal can be a good option too if you are really hungry - just keep an eye on the amount and the calories. Smart snacking though is really about taking the time to plan what you eat between meals. Don’t just leave it to chance and go to the nearest café or shop, where you might be tempted by all sorts of high calorie foods – there are endless delicious looking but very calorific pies and cakes, as well as crisps and chocolate. When you’re going out for the day or when you’re at work, make sure you bring your own healthy snacks with you! And make sure your fridge is always full of healthy food you can quickly fill up on too - it may sound obvious, but if you don’t buy those cookies, sweets and crisps, you can’t eat them!

2 Cook Smart
You don't need to stop eating all the foods you love best - just cook them in a different way! You’d be amazed at the huge difference it can make to the calories. So cut back on fried foods and use as little oil as possible when you griddle, sauté or stir-fry. (Use olive oil if you can, it’s better for your heart and all oils have the same amount of calories!) Use lots of fresh herbs for flavour – and try spices too. Cooking food in the oven is much better for you than deep frying. Make your own fresh sauces too from chopped tomatoes instead of using shop bought jars – it will save you a fortune too! The very best low fat ways to cook meat and fish is to grill them, while steaming is the no 1 way for most vegetables – boiling is fine too, but don’t overdo it.

3 Smart Plates
Do you always leave your plate completely clean after every meal? Well, this is one thing you definitely don’t need to keep doing, especially if you are having a takeaway or eating out. Learn to stop eating when you are full and leave what you don’t need. You don't have to waste half your meal – most restaurants will let you have a doggie bag – and then it’s a great way to enjoy two good, filling meals instead of one extra large one, which only leaves you feeling totally stuffed!. With takeaways, it’s easy, they can be taken home and you can put half in the fridge. At home, it’s the same – don’t think you have to eat every scrap of food, just stop when you are full. If you find this hard – and many of us do – then practice leaving a little food at every meal.

4 Smarter Starters
Starters can be your best friend! Begin each meal with a starter of a bowl of vegetable soup or large salad, to fill you up and prevent over-eating later on. Don’t add too much dressing to salads or cream to soup. And try eating one of these before you go out, too, especially if you’re off to one of those social events full of those tiny but calorie heavy canapés and nibbles - it’s so easy to eat just one more…and another…! If you’re eating out, try having 2 starters instead of a starter and a main course.

5 Be a Smartie Foodie
It’s really worth taking a bit of time to learn as much as you can about the foods you buy and their calorie, sugar and salt levels. Start by reading food labels – you’ll be amazed what you’ll discover and quite how many calories there are in some foods. Beware of clever marketing – for example, some “low fat” versions have as many calories as the main versions – the fat is often replaced with sugar. There’s lots of info available to help you understand about healthy food and nutrition, especially on the net, but also in books, articles and magazines. Make sure you have the right nutritional balance in your diet for healthy weight loss - you can’t lose weight successfully and safely without knowing the essential key principles of nutrition, so you get the right balance of protein carbs and fats – plus the minerals and vitamins you need.

We all want to find easy ways to lose weight – and the best way is to find those smart tricks and diet tips which make sure you stay on track for diet success! Without trying! Include these simple diet tips and easy ways to lose weight and you’ll hardly even notice you’re on a diet. But your body certainly will – you’ll soon be on your way to healthy weight loss and your perfect weight forever. You’ll even find your friends will be asking you how you do it - you’ll be able to give them these tips on how to lose weight and how to diet.

Author's Bio: 

Sophie James is a leading UK expert on weight loss, fitness and healthy nutrition. If you’d like to know more about healthy weight loss and how to achieve your perfect weight forever, then please visit www.expertsecrets4weightloss.com where you can access lots of free info, follow her blog and download a free chapter of her new ebook Lose Weight While You Sleep!