If you want to lose weight you should start by avoiding sugar and starch (like bread, pasta and potatoes). This is an old idea: For 150 years or more there have been a huge number of weight-loss diets based on eating fewer carbs. What’s new is that dozens of modern scientific studies have proven that, yes, low carb is the most effective way to lose weight.
Add resistance training. A 2006 study published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism suggests that combining cardiovascular (aerobic) exercise with resistance training is more effective than cardiovascular training alone in getting rid of abdominal fat. You can do resistance training with free weights, exercise machines or resistance bands and it may also be useful to train from unstable positions due to increased muscle activity.
Unsaturated fats like poly- and monounsaturated fats can lower cholesterol levels, which reduces the risk of heart disease. Unsaturated fats are typically liquid at room temperature and provide our bodies with essential fats that they can’t create on their own. These fats mainly come from plants (avocado, nuts and seeds, olive, canola, etc.) but some come from the sea too (fish and seafood).
And maybe a new mattress, because it’s not just the amount of time you spend sleeping that keeps you lean, it’s also the quality of your sleep. Fat cells in your body produce a hormone called leptin that helps the body keep track of how much potential energy (i.e. fat) it has stored. But leptin is only produced during certain stages of sleep. Miss out on those stages because you’re not resting soundly enough, and you’ll disturb levels of the hormone, leaving your body with no real idea of its energy reserves. Consequently, you’ll end up storing calories rather than burning them.
The scale is not necessarily your friend. You may want to lose fat – but the scale measures muscles, bone and internal organs as well. Gaining muscle is a good thing. Thus weight or BMI are imperfect ways to measure your progress. This is especially true if you’re just coming off a long period of semi-starvation (calorie counting), as your body may want to restore lost muscles etc. Starting weight training and gaining muscle can also hide your fat loss.
For overall health improvements - the mental boost it provides and enhanced blood circulation etc - aerobic exercise should be included in any good fitness program, and indeed it does burn body fat and can assist weight training throughout this process. But to overemphasize it while neglecting high intensity weight training is a fundamental mistake. In fact, excessive cardio may negate our weight training efforts; it can rob us of our strength and negatively impact our recovery abilities. Yet, used correctly as a tool rather than blindly using it as foundational to the achievement of our fitness goals, it can improve recovery and enhance muscle growth: three 45 minute sessions per week would be sufficient, slightly more or less depending on the host of individual factors (metabolic response, body type and so on) that often make designing specific training programs difficult.
Eat only fresh fruits with a high level of anti-oxidants such as lemon, oranges, etc. The meals and snacks must strictly comprise fruits, as these contain more of water, essential nutrients and less of fat. To make low-calorie snacks out of fruits, you could prepare smoothies with low-fat yoghurt and lots of fresh fruits. Pour in a glass of banana or apple smoothie to gratify hunger for a long time. A perfect start for your 10 day weight loss plan.
Some of us no longer have the strong joints we had as teenagers. Jogging is out of the question and walking doesn’t cut it. The good news is elliptical trainers provide an intense, low impact cardio workout. In fact, a 145-lb. person can burn about 300 calories in 30 minutes on an elliptical trainer. That’s about as many calories as running burns, but without the joint wear-and-tear.
Make sure to program your cardio exercise in with your weight training the right way, though — a 2017 study found that performing cardio and weight training workouts on alternate days was far more effective for burning belly fat than stacking the workouts on top of each other in the same session. Put the two together, and watch that unhealthy midsection shrink.
The final possible culprit behind stubborn weight issues may be the stress hormone, cortisol. Too much cortisol will increase hunger levels, bringing along subsequent weight gain. The most common cause of elevated cortisol is chronic stress and lack of sleep (see tip #10), or cortisone medication (tip #9). It’s a good idea to try your best to do something about this.
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.
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