Many people always equate body size to their own sense of intrinsic worth, but it should not have to be that way. Although this modern world we live in is obsessed with “being thin is always better” mentality, one should not forget that physical looks should not be prioritized more than the need to be healthy. Being able to lose weight and keep it off affords people a lot of great benefits. But, the process of losing weight can also be full of difficulties.
If you’re serious about losing weight and keeping it off for the long haul, check out the following ways.
Choose the right weight loss pills
If you are looking to lose weight with the help of pills, know that not all of them are created equal. Some weight loss pills have one or more active ingredients that have different effects to the body. Some of these ingredients are good at increasing the body’s ability to burn fats. Other pills also reduce appetite as well as fat absorption. But there are also pills being sold on the internet that do more harm than good to the body. If you plan to include these kinds of pills into your weight loss regimen, look for weight loss pills that can help you break your bad eating habits. This will help make it easier for you to cut your calorie intake. Most of all, do not forget to choose only those pills that have been manufactured based on science-backed clinical studies.
Make sure you love your workout routine
Exercise is an indispensable part of losing weight and staying healthy all throughout the process. Alas, there are a slew of expert recommendations as to how much exercise is needed by an individual. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that adults should spend at least 150 minutes of exercise per week. The good news is that these exercises do not have to be too rigid nor too extreme. Exercises that are of moderate intensity can be good, especially if you are still starting out in your weight loss regimen. Then do not forget to also include 75 minutes per week of exercises that are considered as vigorous-intensity. However, whatever type of exercise or training you choose, make sure that you are enjoying it. Otherwise, you run the risk of skipping your workout routine several times in a day. Do not be afraid to incorporate fun into your workouts by exercising with a buddy or playing a song in the background. Schedule friend meet-ups after working out at the gym. It is important that you enjoy your routine because this will increase your likelihood of sticking to it. Last but not the least, never start any exercise regimen without first consulting your health care provider and a fitness expert.
Reduce your calorie intake
We have heard time and again that reducing calorie intake works wonders in shedding off those excess pounds. Make sure that you burn more calories than you consume on a daily basis and not the other way around. But, this is definitely easier said than done. When we talk about calories, several things have to be kept in mind. First, not all calories have the same effect on your body. If you consume 100 calories of HFCS or High-Fructose Corn Syrup it can wreak all sorts of havoc into your health. But, if you consume 100 calories of Brussel sprouts your body will largely benefit from the nutrients it contains. If you are looking to lose weight and sustain it, steer clear of foods that are loaded with calories, yet do not give your body the nutrients and satiety that it needs. Instead of eating donuts when you are hungry, reach for a bowl of vegetable salad or a sandwich made from whole wheat bread and slices of avocado. Be careful about consuming calories. Do not make the mistake of eating just because you’re stressed. Whenever you decide to consume calories, see to it that you are doing it because you want to nourish your body and achieve satiety and not because you want to have it as part of your stress coping mechanism.
Watch out on your carb intake
Loading up on carbs, specifically refined carbs, will jumpstart the production of insulin in the body in order to help it deal with the influx of refined carbs into the bloodstream. Although insulin helps your body regulate its blood sugar levels, it will also keep the fat cells from releasing fats, which are supposed to be used by the body as fuel. Insulin also creates more fat cells that are necessary for storing what the body can no longer burn. As a consequence, you will find it hard to lose weight because insulin can only burn carbohydrates, you also continue to crave carbohydrates and the vicious cycle just keeps occurring. Some of the best carbs for weight loss include barley, whole wheat pasta, green peas, whole wheat bread, acorn squash, oatmeal and quinoa.
The National Health Service highly recommends that individuals must stick to a healthy diet, especially when they are in the process of losing weight. This way, people will only be losing excess fats or weight and not put their health at risk. The experts from the NHS stresses the importance of eating carbs even when trying to lose weight. Never give in to diets that advocate extreme carbohydrate restrictions. Remember that carbs are part of the macronutrients that the body needs along with protein and fats. Just always remember to take in only enough carbs that your body needs according to your age, health status and body built.
Consume more soluble fibers
Losing those excess fats in your midsection can be too difficult to do. Luckily, there is a way to help make it easier for you to do that. If you consume foods that are rich sources of soluble fiber your appetite will be suppressed. This is because soluble fiber plays a role in regulating the production of hormones that are linked to appetite control. Besides, soluble fiber has also been found to slow down the movement of food into the gut. As a result, you feel fuller for a longer period of time. There are also studies which reveal that eating soluble fiber on a regular basis can lead to a reduction of hunger hormones. In turn, you are more likely to reduce your calorie intake and this is such good news if you want to lose not just your belly fat but your excess weight as well. Examples of foods that are high in soluble fiber content include Brussels sprouts, Avocados, Lima Beans, Broccoli and Pears. Chickpea Flour Pizza, Cheddar Chicken Quinoa Bake and Spanish Cauliflower Rice with Kale are few of the many high-soluble fiber rich recipes that you should try.
Consider natural herbs
What you eat largely influences how your weight loss regimen will pan out. However, remember that how you prepare your food and what ingredients you put into it can also have an impact on your body. If you want to rev up your body’s metabolism, consider adding more herbs and spices into every meal you cook. There are several herbs that are known to be effective in helping you lose weight such as:
- Cinnamon – use this herb to add a sweet flavor to your dish. It helps stave off cravings while also slowing down the absorption of food to make you feel fuller for a longer period of time. Cinnamon is also known to help in the process of burning off fat and in improving an individual’s glucose metabolism, which makes this herb so beneficial for weight loss.
- Fenugreek – this herb is often used in spice blends, tea blends, curry powder and dry rubs. Its active properties are beneficial for controlling one’s appetite, which could also lead to reduced food intake. One study showed that a daily supplement of 8 grams of fenugreek led to better satiety and reduced hunger.
- Cayenne Pepper – this can be used both as a spice and as a medicinal herb and has been found beneficial for those wanting to improve their metabolism. Ingesting one teaspoon of cayenne pepper can help reduce caloric consumption while reducing one’s cravings for fatty foods.
- Oregano – this herb contains a powerful compound called carvacrol which is known to help the body boost its ability to lose weight. Some studies also show that carvacrol compounds have the ability to influence specific proteins and genes that play a role in regulating fat synthesis.
Eat a protein-rich breakfast
Protein works wonders in regulating one’s appetite hormones to make a person feel full. A research conducted on young adults showed that eating a high-protein breakfast has hormonal effects that were found to last for hours after meals. Good examples of high protein foods include quinoa porridge, eggs, nuts, seed butters, chia seeds and oats. A study showed that men who had higher protein intake were found to have increased lean body mass. The same was also found to lose more fat, compared to other study participants who only consumed lower amounts of protein. Protein takes longer to digest and this translates to a prolonged feeling of fullness. Another good thing about protein is the fact that it is capable of burning more calories once it is digested compared to other food groups. So, go ahead and do not hesitate to indulge in a protein-loaded breakfast. Some great breakfast recipes you can try include Turkish Fried Egg, Cottage Cheese Bowl, Chocolate Peanut Butter Porridge and Smoked Salmon Toast.
Pay attention to your gut health
Bacteria in the gut play a role in weight management. The human gut is home to trillions of bacteria that is not only important to the functioning of the brain and the immune system. They are also important in helping you manage your weight.
Researchers have found that having a diverse mixture of microbes in a person’s gut is one important key to maintaining a healthy weight. In fact, experts also reveal that slim people were found to have a more diverse microbes in the gut than their overweight counterparts. Another study also suggests that people living in the United States, where there is a high rate of obesity, were found to have less-diverse gut microbes which is contrary to what the experts found among people in less developed countries.
There are several ways to improve gut health so that it will also be easier for you to manage your weight. One of these is to regularly consume probiotic foods such as kefir, miso, tempeh, kimchi, sauerkraut and kombucha. It is also important for one to consume probiotic foods, which are the kinds of foods that do a great job in stimulating the growth and activity of healthy bacteria in the gut. Examples of these probiotic foods are banana, asparagus, artichoke, garlic, onion, avocado and chicory root. To improve the diversity of bacteria in the gut, it is also important for one to eat more plant-based foods so that fiber uptake will also increase. Experts advise that people should see to it that their daily diet should comprise 75 percent fiber rich foods.
Get enough rest and sleep
Several studies have proven the claim that not getting enough sleep, i.e., less than 5 or 6 hours every night are prone to becoming obese. One reason for this is the fact that insufficient sleep can slow down the body’s metabolism. In turn, the body’s ability to convert the calories you consumed into energy will also be adversely affected. When your metabolism slows down, the body’s unused energy will also be stored as fats. Moreover, poor sleep can also cause an increase in the production of cortisol and insulin in the body, which also triggers increased fat storage. In addition, the amount of sleep that a person gets every night greatly influences the production of ghrelin and leptin hormones which are key players of appetite regulation. Findings from a research that was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, showed that getting enough sleep, which means more than seven hours per night, led dieters to lose 55 percent more fats compared to their sleep-deprived counterparts. Furthermore, those who were not able to get enough sleep were also found to be hungrier and experienced less satiety after meals. They also had less energy to exercise.
With discipline and determination, along with the tips mentioned in this article there is no doubt that you will be able to drop those excess pounds gradually. And, since all these above mentioned tips are “natural”, you won’t have a hard time keeping that healthy weight for life. Never aim for drastic weight loss. But, rather strive to lose weight and maintain it for a healthier and happier you for life.