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Originally published Tuesday, March 13, 2012 at 7:04 PM

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Ideas to get on the road to well-being

Tips from regular people who have overcome their passion for fattening delights or conquered their fear of breaking a sweat.

Chicago Tribune

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For months, I've been in search of bite-size tips on diet, exercise and well-being. Often, the most practical suggestions come not from trainers and diet gurus but from regular people who've been there — who've overcome their passion for fried, fattening delights or conquered their fear of breaking a sweat.

So, here's some of what you had to say ...

"Brush your teeth with minty toothpaste right after eating. You just don't really want to eat right after you've cleaned your teeth," C.V. emails. This helps curb snacking when you're not really hungry, but it also works well for bedtime eaters. Tell yourself you won't eat another bite after you brush your teeth.

Another C.V. suggestion: "Eat half and wait. I make up my dinner plate, eat half of it, then put the rest in the fridge. If I'm still hungry an hour and a half later, I eat the rest. I rarely feel hungry later." Also, consider this psychological trick: Use a smaller plate when serving a meal.

Moderate workouts don't burn nearly as many calories as we'd like to believe, says another reader. "Many people have the misconception of 'I am working out and I can eat anything,'" he says. That's a ticket to disaster.

His recommendation?

"Weigh yourself several times a week. It is easier to lose 2 pounds than to wait for your clothes to get tight and then have to lose 10."

"I have found keeping a daily diary of eating, exercise and activity ... keeps me honest," says A.S. That's the underpinning of the Weight Watchers program. Also, myplate.com is a free online tracker for setting weekly weight loss goals.

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