If you’re someone who’s been struggling with weight loss, we’re pretty sure none of the fad diets that you’ve tried has worked. We mean—for the long-run. We’re pretty sure once you’ve stopped the diet, all the weight came back, and sometimes with more.
The simple reason is that there is no quick fix or magic pill to losing weight. Losing weight and staying slim for good is about making a commitment to lasting lifestyle changes.
Here are 7 simple eating and 5 very doable lifestyle changes that you can slowly incorporate into your daily routine.
Start with a couple of changes. Then work your way up to all 12 whenever you’re ready.
If you’re consistent enough, it can even lead you to losing up to 20 pounds in just 14 days, just like it did for my friend Michelle who used to weigh over 200 pounds. She lost 10 pounds in slightly over her first week of consistently putting these tips to work. And ended up losing 54 pounds in that same year!
And the best part of all this is – there is no crazy or weird behavior required.
Let’s get started.
1. Load Up On Lean Protein
Protein is the muscle’s food. Consume lean protein to help the muscles repair and rebuild as a lot of wear and tear occurs when you workout. Include foods like chicken breast, mushroom, lentils, fish, beans, soy, etc. to give your muscles the required nutrition.
2. Eat More Healthy Fats
Healthy fats will not make you gain weight. In fact, healthy fats help reduce inflammation and prevent inflammation-induced weight gain. Consume almonds, walnuts, macadamia nuts, pine nuts, avocado, fatty fish, chia seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, olive oil, cheese, dark chocolate, and eggs.
3. Do Not Avoid Dietary Fiber
We often think that we should completely avoid carbs to lose weight. But, that’s not true. You need the right type of carbs. Dietary fiber is a type of carb that cannot be digested by humans but aids weight loss by keeping you full for a longer duration and preventing fat absorption. Consume broccoli, flax seeds, prune, peaches, pear, apple, lima beans, black beans, figs, berries, oats bran, barley, green peas, guava, peach, Brussels sprouts, artichokes, pomegranate, kiwi, brown rice, beetroot, quinoa, acorn squash, etc.
4. Drink More Water
Most of the times when you are thirsty but don’t drink water, you may think you are hungry and load up on calories. Moreover, not drinking enough water can prevent your cells from performing their functions, leading to slow metabolism, dehydration, constipation, and bloating. All these conditions can lead to stress and inflammation in the body. So, drink at least 2-3 liters of water per day. You can also have infused water, fresh fruit or vegetable juices or smoothies, coconut water, and buttermilk.
5. Do Not Starve Yourself
If you think you will lose weight by starving yourself, you can’t. Not eating for a prolonged period may signal the body to shift to the starvation mode, and it will stop using any calories consumed as usable energy. The extra calories will get stored as fat, leading to weight gain. So, eat every 2-4 hours to keep your metabolism active and the cells functioning properly.
6. Eat Fat Burning Superfoods
Some foods help burn the calories apart from providing the body with nutrition. Include fat burning foods to help you shed the fat, especially from your tummy area. Consume grapefruit, green tea, brown rice, quinoa, cayenne pepper, black pepper, celery, cinnamon, yogurt, low-fat milk, nuts, turmeric, dark chocolate, apple cider vinegar, spinach, cauliflower, garlic, peanut butter, etc.
7. Stay Away from Junk Food
High-carb, high-calorie, and zero nutritional value is what is known as junk food. It does nothing but harm your health and body weight. Avoid snacking on junk food, such as potato chip, fries, fried chicken, etc., and also avoid midnight snacking. Believe me, if you stop eating junk, you will end up losing a lot of weight.
8. Stop Hitting Snooze
We all do it. Keep hitting the snooze button until it’s too late even to take a shower! But, if you want to retain your amazing abs, you must drag yourself out of bed.
If you wake up early or say, at least 2 hours before you head out, you can do yoga or abs workout, prepare breakfast and lunch, and not look like you just rushed to work or school without brushing your hair.
9. Reduce Stress
Stress is harmful in many ways. When you are stressed, the hormone cortisol is released, which increases glucose levels in the blood and inhibits digestive functions. This leads to fat deposition in the abdominal area and, in some cases, insulin resistance and diabetes. Yoga, meditation, cardio, weight training, playing a sport, swimming, painting, reading books, traveling, listening to music, and even applying makeup for fun can help you reduce stress.
10. Don’t Miss Breakfast
You may not agree, but if you miss breakfast, you will feel hungry all day long. You need to have a substantial breakfast to help your body function normally. Include fiber, protein, and healthy fats in your breakfast to have a complete and balanced meal before you start your day.
11. Have A Weekly Workout Plan
Working out is essential if you want to lose weight and maintain that weight loss. Work out at least 4 hours a week to keep yourself in shape. Do a mix of cardio, weights, and strength training to shed the fat and build lean muscle mass.
12. Get Proper Sleep
Numerous studies have shown that getting less than 5–6 hours of sleep per night is associated with increased incidence of obesity. There are several reasons behind this.
Research suggests that insufficient and poor-quality sleep slows down the process in which the body converts calories to energy, called metabolism. When metabolism is less effective, the body may store unused energy as fat. In addition, poor sleep can increase the production of insulin and cortisol, which also prompt fat storage.
How long and how deep someone sleeps also affects the regulation of the appetite-controlling hormones leptin and ghrelin. Leptin sends signals of fullness to the brain while ghrelin tells your brain you’re hungry.
Without a properly functioning leptin and ghrelin, you’re constantly hungry and nothing you eat will ever make you full.
So, sleep more and sleep well.