Tag Archives: Weight Loss diets

Weight loss Quick Fixes

It is rightly said that there are no short cuts to weight loss. But certain tips can come handy in losing weight as well as crossing the dreaded weight plateau. Do try these and share your experiences….

Eat Slowly: Stretch your meals to, at least, 20 minutes or longer. Our stomach, mouth and brain are all connected and it takes 20 minutes of eating before the stomach signals our brain that I am done. If you tend to eat very fast try to concentrate on chewing; it will help you in slowing down.

Water: Drinking 8 glasses of water a day is important for our health and it will also help in losing weight. Water is necessary for the metabolism of your stored fat. Also, we sometimes perceive thirst as hunger. So whenever you feel hungry have a glass of water, wait for 5 minutes….still hungry, grab a fruit or a munchy salad.

Add herbs and spices: Some of us feel that cutting down on fat can rob the food of its taste. Add the flavor back with herbs and spices like vinegar, garlic, cilantro, thyme, asparagus, etc. Experiment with different herbs and spices until you get the flavour right.

Increase your intake of fiber rich foods. They will help fill you up faster and for longer time. Fiber also helps in lowering the glycemic index of foods.

Never skip a meal, especially breakfast. The first meal of the day starts our metabolism, it then speeds up for about eight hours and then starts slowing down. If you skip breakfast the metabolism will not speeden until lunch time. Doing this you miss out on 3-4 hours of fat burning time.

Metabolism also slows down whenever hunger sets in. Stay full with healthy, nonfattening foods and your metabolism will continue to burn the stored fat as fast as your body will allow.

Exercise is probably the most important key to increasing your metabolism and burning off excess fat. Research shows that you burn more stored fat for energy when you do aerobic exercises on an empty stomach than on a full stomach. Research also shows that you burn more stored fat when you exercise late in the day rather than in the morning. Thus, the best time to exercise to lose weight by burning your stored fat is in the late afternoon/early evening before dinner. Twenty to thirty minutes of exercise in the evening will not only burn stored fat but it will also increase your metabolism.

Be positive: The more positive your self-esteem, the better you feel about yourself, the faster and easier it will be for you to lose weight. Negative emotions will also interfere with your weight loss program. It is difficult to stay motivated to lose weight when you feel bad. Overeating often accompanies negative emotions such as depression, anxiety, fear, guilt and anger. If this is true for you, begin a stress management program including some exercise and relaxation exercises.

It is bad being at the wrong side of your weighing scale…. trying not to be at the right side is worse even. So keep trying and you will definitely reach your goal.

 

Guidelines to successful Weight Loss and Management

Losing weight is easier than maintaining. Those of us who have tried will fully agree with this. But, with a realistic ideology it becomes easier to lose as well as maintain your weight, with minimal chances of gaining it back.

A few tips for smooth sailing…

Set Realistic Goals: Before boarding the weight loss train, chalk out your goals clearly. Research has proven that writing down your intentions is far more likely to turn them into actions than thinking or talking about them. Also, ensure that whatever weight loss goal you decide on; is realistic and you have a suitable time frame to achieve it.

Monitor Body Composition Changes: it is a far better motivator than weighing scales. Take circumference measurements of specific sites of the body like abdomen, hip, thigh before starting the weight loss programme and take repeat measurements every month. Those who plan to join gym or health centers might also monitor the changes in their body composition (fat and lean mass). Decrease in fat and increase in lean mass is an indicator of improving body stats.

Weigh Weekly / Fortnightly: It is any day better than stepping on the weighing scale daily. Frequent weighing can lead to an obsession about weight and this obsession might pose hindrance in successful weight loss. You need to come to terms with the fact that an initial weight loss of 2-3 kg cannot be maintained always. Try and lose 0.5-1 kg per week. Slow and gradual weight loss is easier to maintain as there are less chances of bounce back.

Keep a Food Diary: A food diary is a record of your daily food intake. It will act as an eye opener as you will acknowledge that you eat or drink several things without even registering them.  It will also evaluate what and when you are eating; whether the diet is balanced or deficient in any important nutrients. Food diary should be maintained for a week and it is recommended that you follow your usual eating pattern while making the record. Everything, from a spoonful of namkeen to sips of cola should be mentioned in the diary. No cheating!!! From the completed food diary your overall eating habits can be assessed and your dietitian / health care provider can suggest necessary changes to improve the same.

Cut and Replace FAT: By examining the food diary diet culprits can be identified and replaced with healthier options. (For healthier substitutions) But don’t try to remove fat completely from your diet. We need fats for their numerous functions in the body and their deficiency can trickle down to deficiency of essential fatty acids and fat soluble vitamins (vitamins A, D, E and K).

Cut Calories Gradually: A sudden calorie deficit can act as a shock for the body which might lower your BMR. This is the biggest mistake which all of us commit while trying to lose weight. So ensure that you start with few restrictions and only when weight loss slows down or you hit a plateau, further restrict the diet or increase the duration of your exercise programme.

Take Small Frequent Meals: Follow a meal pattern in which you incorporate 4-6 meals daily, including snacks. Our body requires energy even to digest food which we eat. So every time we eat, the body is using that extra bit. This does not mean that you can increase the amount of food; rather spread the food you plan to eat in the entire day over these meals. Several researches have concluded that frequent eating keeps blood sugar and insulin levels steady and helps control blood cholesterol levels too. A regular food intake also ensures a constant flow of energy for the entire day and no hunger pangs.

Lifestyle Changes: Long term weight management means making a few changes in lifestyle – lifelong healthy eating, regular exercise and abstinence from smoking and alcohol.

Last but not the least stay positive during the schedule; positivity can do wonders for your body image and will keep you motivated.

Hope these pointers are helpful for you…..