If I could give you only one recommendation, just one thing you can do that will make a huge difference in your weight loss/health efforts, it would be to cut out sugar. It was only when I gave up sugar that I really lost the weight I wanted to lose. And by keeping sugar out of your diet, it's pretty easy to keep the weight off.
Why would cutting sugar make such a huge difference? When we eat a sugary treat, it tastes great. But that sugar rushes into our bloodstream in the form of glucose, and raises our blood glucose levels really fast. As a result, our pancreas says, "Whoa, we've got to bring that blood sugar level down, so let's release some insulin!" Insulin works wonderfully, and your blood glucose levels begin to come back to normal. Unfortunately, insulin tends to be sort of a fat storage hormone! So you are much more likely to store that cupcake, rather than burn it, because you've released so much insulin.
But let's say I had a delicious bowl of fruit with some plain yogurt (sweetened with a little stevia and vanilla). Delicious! Yes, fruit has sugar in it, too. But the fiber in the fruit slows down the release of the sugar into my bloodstream, so I won't get such a high sugar level spike. It releases the sugar into my bloodstream more slowly. My body won't need to send out as much insulin to control this treat. So I am more likely to burn the calories, rather than store them. Even if both treats are similar in calories, you're going to do much better with the fruit!
When we eat a lot of sugar, we tend to store fat around our bellies. You'll
notice if you cut that sugar out of your life, your belly is going to
trim down. And it doesn't take long! You might miss sugar for a little
while, but once you get it out of your system, you'll feel great. It
was probably the best thing I've ever done for my diet. And if I could
only give you one tip, that would be it. Thankfully, though, I can give
you lots of other tips in the future! But why not start with this most
important step toward health and losing that stubborn weight? You'll
feel so much better without those energy dips and cravings!