According to research in the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition," 37 percent of Americans' total daily calories come from sugar-sweetened drinks, including sodas and fruit juices, yet these calories do little to make you feel full. If you crave something sweet, a whole fruit provides more vitamins, minerals, and fiber, plus you're less likely to eat additional foods because the volume is greater in your digestive system.
Keep a food journal. You're serious about this, right? So grab a notebook or download an app (there are dozens of free ones out there). When you come face-to-face with what you're eating, it's a lot easier to see where your downfalls are. And to see your progress! And lots of apps have neat things you can mess around with that are pretty motivating, too.
This is one of the first and foremost things anyone trying to shed a few extra kilos should do. Meal planning will improve your life in many ways. It not only saves your time and money while lowering your stress but also helps you make healthier food choices. A lack of planning means, you’re more likely to go for quick and easy food which is often the unhealthiest and worst for your weight and overall health. Make sure that you make a plan of your weekly meals to stay fit and achieve your goals faster.
Many people think they need carbs at every meal. But unlike protein and fat, which are essential to your survival, your body can function quite happily without them. So your diet plan to help you how to lose weight doesn’t need too many carbs. A great place to start is to cut highly-processed carbs out of your diet and swap them for green vegetables like broccoli, spinach and kale. They are full of vitamins and minerals, high in dietary fibre and low on calories. This means that you can eat lots of them to help keep hunger at bay.
Getting enough decent sleep is also important to ensure a healthy hormone balance. Your body produces the most testosterone and growth hormone at night, which are key hormones for better body composition. Quality sleep also reduces the stress hormone called cortisol. When we’re sleep deprived, cortisol increases in order to keep your body running – but the result of this is lower ‘real’ energy, fatigue, food cravings and mental fog.
In fact, a study in BMC Endocrine Disorders found that just 12 15-minute HIIT sessions improved the insulin sensitivity of overweight participants by 23 percent. What does this meal for fat loss? Making sure your insulin sensitivity is in check can increase your ability to break down fat and can lower your risk of diabetes, cancer, and metabolism-affecting thyroid issues.
Avoid Junk Food – While you are at it, make sure that you do not eat junk food by any chance. By eating junk food, you are creating your chances of getting slim, very slim. Junk food like fries and burgers and flavored sodas are the worst enemy when you are aiming to lose weight. Instead of snacking on these, you must eat nuts, and fruits when feeling hungry.
If you’ve got weight to lose and you want it gone fast, try swapping out your usual proteins in favor of fish. Not only is fish lower in calories than an equivalent amount of beef or chicken, a study published in Obesity reveals study subjects who added omega-3 fatty acids, like those found in fish, to their diets shed more weight and had an easier time keeping it off than those who skipped them.
Nuts, the second food to watch, contain a fair amount of carbohydrate, and it’s very easy to unwittingly scarf down large quantities. Cashew nuts are among the worst carb-wise – you’ll find that they contain around 20% carbohydrate by weight. For someone following a strict keto diet with a 20 grams of carbs per day allowance, this means that consuming 100 grams (which happens in a flash!) will have filled their daily quota. Peanuts tend to be around 10-15% carbohydrate – not putting them in the clear either.
Sometimes, to whip your body into shape, you have to get a little nutty. While nuts are high in fat, it’s that very fat that makes them such powerful weapons in the war against a ballooning belly. In fact, research from Reina Sofia University Hospital reveals that study participants who consumed a diet rich in monounsaturated fats, like those in nuts, over a 28-day period gained less belly fat than their saturated fat-consuming counterparts while improving their insulin sensitivity.
Another win for your morning cup of joe: Caffeinated coffee keeps things moving through the digestive tract. Since staying regular is key to a tighter-looking tummy, drinking about 8 to 16 ounces of java at the same time every day can help you stay on schedule. Remember: Sugary drinks can lead to weight gain, so skip fancy flavorings and synthetic sweeteners containing sugar alcohols, which can cause bloating.
Women who ate low-fat dairy products, such as non-fat yogurt and low-fat cheese three to four times a day lost 70 percent more fat than low-dairy dieters, according to a study published in the journal Obesity Research. "Calcium serves as a switch that tells your body to burn excess fat faster," explains study author Michael Zemel, M.D., director of the Nutrition Institute at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Sorry, but you won't reap the same benefits from calcium-fortified O.J. Research shows that you get the best results from dairy products themselves, not fortified foods. Aim for 1,200 mg, which includes about three servings of dairy a day.
The notion that abdominal obesity is the most dangerous kind isn't new. Back in the 1940s, the French physician Jean Vague observed that some obese patients had normal blood chemistry, while some moderately overweight patients showed serious abnormalities that predisposed them to heart disease or diabetes. Almost always, the latter patients carried their fat around their middles. And, almost always, they were men.
In a way, moderate-intensity physical activity is that "magic pill" a lot of people are looking for, because the health benefits go beyond keeping your waistline trim: Not only can it reduce your risk of cancer, stroke, diabetes and heart attacks, but studies have shown that physical activity can significantly improve the moods of patients with major depressive disorders.
Switch it up. It's too easy to develop a routine...and then get bored with it. Either your muscles get bored or your mind gets bored or both. And when this happens, you actually burn fewer calories -- you're pushing yourself less hard. So switch it up! Either mess around with duration or intensity or do a completely new activity. Your body and mind will thank you for it.