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As students look forward to a fresh start and a new school year, this is also a good time for dieters to take a fresh look at their program as well.

Like starting school, starting a new diet can be exciting but it can also be overwhelming and a bit stressful.

We want to help you have a fresh start to your program. Here are some tips to guide you:

1. Make the first day easier. The first day trying anything new can often be the hardest and most stressful. Give yourself a break by not setting your expectations too high. Commit to having a fresh start tomorrow. Try not to feel overwhelmed by the amount of weight you have to lose. Instead, celebrate your new positive attitude to get healthier and know that taking baby steps will help you realize your goals.

2. Think safety first. Now’s the time to forget about those quick-fix weight loss programs that promise to melt the pounds away without any effort on your part. Usually those programs end up lightening your wallet, not your waist. Know that losing 1-2 pounds per week is a safe rate of weight loss.

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3. Do your homework. Even if this program isn’t new to you, you can probably benefit from a refresher course. Make time to look at your meal plan and strategies. These are the tools to help shape your weight-gaining patterns into weight-losing habits. Check out the recipes, workout builder, newsletters and blogs for more inspiration and information. And follow some basic ABC rules – such as get the junk food out of your house, eat more fruits and veggies and start walking more during the course of your normal day’s routine.

4. Find a tutor. A good tutor can help a struggling student start realizing some success. If you’re struggling with one or more aspects of your weight loss program, it’s time to reach out to a fellow dieting buddy or to one of the experts. Whether you’re struggling with finding time to assemble a quick healthy meal, are dealing with diet saboteurs or can’t find the motivation to exercise, help is often just a click away.

I hope these four tips will help you look forward to starting anew this Fall.

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