It’s a sad truth that there are no quick fixes when it comes to weight loss. Today’s era of fashion and glamour demands everyone to be fit and energetic. Getting a perfectly balanced body is not a day’s work. It requires plenty of effort and a consistent approach towards maintaining our body. Shedding those extra pounds may seem daunting at the initial stages but it’s worth for maintaining a healthy and comfortable life.
Weight loss doesn’t necessarily include sacrificing your hunger, there are low-carb and low-calorie diets that may be easier to keep your momentum. You might have come across several claims guaranteeing quick weight loss, trust those that are recommended by experts and backed by evidence. Exercising, limiting calorie intake, reducing carbohydrates and fats in the diet, intermittent fasting are some of the proven ways to naturally reduce the weight.
Let’s have a look at some of these:
1. Gradual eating habit
Most of us try finishing our food quickly, specifically when we get our beloved dish. It’s not about the specific food option we like, rather it’s about how much time we devote to eating it. Those concerned about overeating need to try maintaining a strict schedule for finishing a meal, which could on an average last 20-25 minutes. Best practice is to chew slowly and swallow only when all the food is chewed up. This would pave the way for enjoying the delicious food and help trigger hormones to justify your full appetite thereby preventing you from over-eating.
2. Cut down on sugar and refined carbohydrates
Swap processed and sugary options with healthy ones such as
fruits, nuts, and seeds instead of high-sugar options
whole wheat, multigrain bread instead of heavy stuff like white rice and regular pasta
herbal teas and fruit-infused water like coconut water instead of high-sugar drinks such as sodas
leafy greens and low-sugar bran flakes rather than corn and cornflakes
Refined carbohydrates don’t contain fiber and essential nutrients. Cutting down on these blood sugar stability and healthy weight and impart you more energy.
Artificial sweetener on the other hand trigger sugar cravings contributing to more weight addition. Try a blend of skim milk with berries or bananas as a healthy smoothie.
3. Consume water before meals
You might wonder how water can satiate hunger, some might even disagree with this thought. Remember, this is being recommended to prevent help you with diet control. Well, there’s a research that found people drinking 1-2 glasses of water before a meal lost more weight than the ones who didn’t drink water at all. If you think you can’t control your hunger to put those extra pounds, try drinking water and you would find your stomach demanding lesser food with water replacing the food to satisfy your craving.
4. Never skip meals
This is the common problem persisting amongst us that the best way to reduce the weight is skipping on meals or be on dieting. Honor your hunger and your stomach and don’t make it feel it’s being starved. Calories are the energy providers of our body and we cannot simply avoid them just for the sake of weight reduction. Instead, maintaining a control helps better manage this challenge. As per Haley Robinson, a clinical dietitian, skipping on meals can cause your metabolism to slow down, causing weight gain or making it harder to lose weight. Instead, prefer eating smaller quantity with more frequency for maintaining a balanced and healthy diet.
5. Yoga and exercise for mindful eating
How can we forget the importance of regular exercise and yoga for helping in shedding excess pounds? A consistent approach helps in burning the excess fats and reaching a balanced state of body and mind. Exercise may include walking, jogging, cycling, weight training and activities like swimming. Walking may be the simplest choice, try aiming for at least 30-40 minute’s walk, 3-4 times a week. Extend the duration on a gradual mode if you wish. Yoga practitioners on the other hand perform various asanas that help them in paying attention to body signals and create mindfulness in understanding the body’s dietary requirement. While you practice, do it for good.
6. Managing stress levels
How come stress contributes to increased weight? When we are under constant stress, hormones such as cortisol remain in bloodstream for a longer duration and contribute to an increase in appetite. Elevated cortisol levels may crave for sweet, salty and fatty food options. Practising relaxation techniques such as meditation, yoga or deep breathing exercise may help bring this down to normal levels. Exercise as explained previously is an excellent way to manage your stress hormones as well.
7. Getting a good sleep
What is the connection between sleep and weight? Lack of sleep may affect the body’s regulation of neurotransmitters, which are chemical messengers allowing nerve cells to communicate with each other. Sleep loss could be the result of work stress, strict schedule, extended working hours and disturbed mindset. Research has proved that reduced sleep tend to increase body mass index (BMI), resulting in obesity. It does point to a positive correlation between good sleep and healthy body weight. So next time you cut down on sleep, think twice.
8. Balance your gut bacteria
Our body is filled with trillions of bacteria, while some may cause disease, some tend to carry our essential healthy body activities. Gut bacteria play an important role in keeping a communication with your immune system and producing certain vitamins. It influences your weight by digesting certain foods and producing chemicals for you to get into a state of filled appetite realization.
Certain foods that can help increase good bacteria in gut include fruits, vegetables and grains in diet, which increases your fiber intake. Fermented food such as yoghurt, miso contains probiotics, which aids in increasing good bacteria. Diet fiber is digested by certain gut bacteria, that aids in weight loss.
You must have realized that weight loss is not a day’s activity but requires persistent efforts. Nutritious and a well-balanced diet is no doubt the best way to maintain a healthy weight, in addition, other recommended ways are important as an effort from an overall contribution perspective. Keep a regular check on your weight and understand if your activities are paving the way to your ultimate goal of weight loss.