5 Easy Calorie-Cutting Tricks

Making a few simple changes may be all it takes to lose weight.

By Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD/LD
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic - Feature

Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Do you find yourself continually reaching for that second helping, filling dinner plates to the rim, or finishing meals in record time? Many unhealthy eating behaviors are simply bad habits, inherited from our parents or influenced by our environment. But these little habits can have a huge impact on how many calories you eat each day -- and ultimately, how much you weigh.

Being able to eat anything you want while still controlling your weight may sound like a dream come true, but it really is possible. Sometimes, all it takes is making a few little changes -- like putting down your fork between bites, using a smaller plate, and turning off the TV during meals.

Experts who spoke to WebMD shared five painless tips and tricks that can help you shave calories, feel satisfied on less food, and ultimately, lose weight.

1. Slow Down

By simply slowing down and taking the time to truly enjoy your meals, you can trim calories, says American Dietetic Association spokesperson, D. Milton Stokes, MPH, RD.

"Eating slower helps you eat less, and if you add in an element of fun, like eating with chopsticks, you won't even realize you are eating less," Stokes says.

Weight loss expert Katherine Tallmadge, RD, says she advises her clients to "relax, take a few deep breaths, and focus their full attention on the food while eating."